TIME's cover and story on life in Israel prompted more than 1,000 letters, mostly in protest.
Your cover story "The Good Life and Its Dangers" outrageously implies that Israelis care more about money than a future of peace and security [Sept. 13]. This deeply odious subtext of Israeli Jews' being obsessed with money plays into the age-old anti-Semitic canard that Jews prize money above any other interest. Ignored is the decades-long yearning of Israelis for peace and the tremendous efforts that successive Israeli governments have made in its pursuit. As Jews around the world embark on a new year with prayers for peace, the article is wrong, inappropriate and offensive.
Abraham H. Foxman, National Director, Anti-Defamation League,
New York City
Karl Vick's article is an astute and accurate assessment of the average Israeli's incredulity as to the possibility of peace. The only glaring inconsistency was the cover. The title, "Why Israel Doesn't Care About Peace," contradicts the essay and insinuates that Israelis' longing for peace has been replaced by hedonism. I guess one should not judge an article by its cover.
Israelis are experiencing peace fatigue; they're tired of fighting and dying for an elusive end to the conflict. Blinded by the spotlight and double standards, Israelis today just want to don their sunglasses and enjoy the natural light of the sun, if only for a while.
Vick's story melodramatically blows the lid off the fact that life goes on in Israel and ends by contradicting its own premise by saying Israelis really do care about peace. Meanwhile, the provocative title will be viewed and absorbed by millions of people. How irresponsible.
East Brunswick, N.J., U.S.
If I am vacationing in Lake Tahoe with my family, that does not make me less interested in seeing that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan come to an end. The whole country of Israel does not have to wear a hair shirt while politicians try to negotiate a solution to this unending conflict.
Palo Alto, Calif., U.S.
Israel's extraordinary economic, scientific and cultural accomplishments do not in any way diminish its citizens' desire for peace. Despite witnessing years of rocket attacks, suicide bombings and Palestinian rejection of proposals for statehood, the vast majority of Israelis still support the two-state solution. Israelis have proved their eagerness to embrace genuine peace offers from Arab leaders, such as Egypt's President Anwar Sadat and King Abdullah of Jordan, and their readiness to make painful concessions. That Israelis are willing to share their homeland with a people that has so often sought their destruction is a further testament to their yearning for peace. As Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently declared at the White House, we want "a peace that will last for generations our generation, our children's generation and the next."
Michael B. Oren, Israel's Ambassador to the U.S.,
Blair and the Presidency
Tony Blair, in his evaluation of three U.S. Presidents ["A Call to Greatness," Sept. 13], seems like a starstruck fan eulogizing his favorite singers. There's not a wart or blemish among them.
In order to become a victorious war Prime Minister, Blair clung to the coattails of George W. Bush. Sadly, both will go down in history as men willing to invent a casus belli to justify an illegal invasion.
Kloof, South Africa