Thursday, May 16, 2002
Also, I''d like to point out that the city of Monterey has used its water allocation to build affordable housing, such as the Osio and for apartments planned for Wave Street. It''s important to note that only two jurisdictions ever allowed water profiteering: Pacific Grove (which was the only city that allowed business-to-residential transfers) and Monterey County (only once, and then the supervisors banned it).
The water board could have ended profiteering without stopping water transfers that allow businesses to provide jobs and bring in tax dollars, which pay for things like affordable housing projects. But the bottom line is, if the water board did its job and found a sustainable water source for the area, instead of holding water hostage in its effort to stop growth (including affordable housing and other socially desirable projects), we wouldn''t even be having this debate.
WaterBoard: Important Allies
Of all the elected city council members within the water district plus water board members, I can think of only five who are environmentalists and 4 of those are on the Water Board. (The other is Barbara Livingston, a Carmel Councilwoman). All the rest will listen to the Chamber of Commerce before they listen to the Sierra Club, particularly the mayors, led by Mayor Ted Balestreri-oops, I mean Mayor Dan Albert of Monterey. That''s why the Chamber of Commerce, the Board of Realtors, and the tourist industry are after the Water Board. It''s the only government entity on the Monterey Peninsula they don''t control. Think about it. Only one of the 32 councilmembers on the Monterey Peninsula is an environmentalist. All the rest would be right at home on the San Jose City Council. What a shame.
Israel: Client State
The knee-jerk reaction of Israel''s apologists, following the previous week''s single article in the Weekly by Palestinian writer Mouin Rabbani, was entirely predictable [Letters, May 9-15]. No modern state can compare with Israel''s perpetual propaganda machine and the lock-step support of its Jewish and other supporters in this country.
One writer even had the temerity to say Israel had "built a modern state with world class medicine, science, technology, R&D, venture capital and creative arts, etc." This statement is the political equivalent of another Creation Myth or Immaculate Conception.
American taxpayers are ongoing partners in Israel and have every right to be heard. It exists because it is a client state of America and receives foreign and military grants of staggering amounts. It is currently using this aid (as it always has) to crush the legitimate human rights and aspirations of Palestinians-as well as to produce "world class medicine, science" etc. etc.
As a result of the latest invasion of the West Bank (and potentially Gaza), Americans can readily see just what Israel''s objective is-a garrison state without regard for world opinion but high regard for American financial backing, both governmental and private.
There is no serious thought of uprooting Israel settlers, i.e., "facts on the ground," as the government cynically refers to these illegal enclaves. Instead of kicking and screaming about the long-overdue publication of Palestinian opinion by a "biased, anti-Semitic US media," American Jews ought to rejoice in the debunking of the myth that they "control" the US media-the Weekly included.
Israel: True Ally
Before one publishes such an inflammatory article, it would be prudent and good journalistic practice to get your facts right ["Witness to Devastation," May 9-15]. Start with the title. Your caveat notwithstanding, the author so much as admits he did not witness or view much of what he wrote. He places cute little snippets throughout the article: "To be fair, I do know of one case where the soldiers neither stole nor destroyed anything." How can you entitle this article "Witness?" when your author admits not seeing anything he is writing about? Is this objective reporting, or is it merely a smear against the Israeli Army?
Given the exaggerations of deaths and injuries in Jenin in the initial reports from the Palestinians, the faked funeral shown on CNN the other day, where the "corpse" moved his arm as he was jarred, and then got up and fled as his stretcher was dropped, I would think a newspaper would carefully check the content of its articles and the sources of its facts.
These incidents of questionable information coming from the Middle East did not seem to cause you any concern before you spread such malicious, hateful statements about the Israeli Army. Before you publish such accusations you ought to check if they are true. At least have an eye witness, and then check how his or her credibility.
The suicide attack on Passover was evidently just too much for the Israel government, and the Israeli army moved into the West Bank. I believe the Israeli army is exercising the maximum of restraint to spare civilian lives. But one must ask why do you place bomb plants in refuge camps, near innocent civilians? Where is the restraint and caution on the Palestinian side? Certainly there is none when your targets are teenagers at a pizza joint, families at a Seder, or ordinary people at a mall or nightclub simply shopping or enjoying themselves.
I do not know what is to come of this situation. However, I do feel Israel is justified in its efforts to stop these vicious attacks. Israel is not asking for much. You should realize how vulnerable the pre-1967 borders were: Jerusalem, Kinetra, Golan Heights. Especially considering the record of "peaceful coexistence" that has been exhibited by the Palestinian partners in the peace process.
I am not saying Israel has not retaliated forcefully and caused death and injury; however, given the situation, and the caution that seems to have been exhibited by the Israeli Army, they have reacted admirably. They are true allies worthy of our support.
Neil J. Ticker/Monterey
Editor, The Weekly, 668 Williams Ave., Seaside, CA, 93955, or email@example.com