Unlimited Access. Try it Today! Your First 10 Days Always $0.99

Readers Respond

News Opinion Readers Respond

Just as divestment helped end apartheid, it could help bring peace to Israel

As someone who was involved in the divestment movement against apartheid in South Africa, I read with interest the Rev. James W. Dale's recent commentary ("Choosing to stay engaged," May 4). I was appreciative of the author's recognition that the Israeli occupation is oppressive. However, the case against divestment from companies profiting from the Israeli occupation was not made. In fact, his commentary reminded me of the arguments made against divestment of companies involved in South Africa.

It was sad to read Rev. Dale's claim that the suffering on both sides is about equal. To be frank, this is nonsense. There is a long list of oppressive measures taken against the Palestinians — home demolitions, interminable checkpoints, the Apartheid Wall, settlements, the occupation and more. There is no comparison, for example, in the numbers of Palestinians killed versus Israelis during Operation Cast Lead.

As someone who witnessed apartheid in both South Africa and occupied Palestine, I will argue vociferously that the divestment movement was the root cause which brought an end to minority rule in Pretoria and got Nelson Mandela released from prison. And if the U.S. government cut off the $3.5 billion in tax dollars going to Israel annually and the divestment movement picked up more steam, Israel would start to negotiate. And negotiations can only proceed if there is a freeze on settlements.

Rev. Dale is concerned about an end to dialogue if the Presbyterians divest. What has the current dialogue achieved? I vote for divestment to force an end to the settlements so that negotiations can begin.

Max Obuszewski, Baltimore

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Israel has acted responsibly against Hamas [Letter]
    Israel has acted responsibly against Hamas [Letter]

    The recent letter writer critical of Israeli actions in Gaza ("Israel committed war crimes during its invasion of Gaza," Oct. 1) conveniently forgets the origins of the Gaza conflict and the effort that Israel made to reduce civilian casualties. Hamas for the last eight years has been firing rockets...

  • Hold Israel accountable for war crimes
    Hold Israel accountable for war crimes

    The Sun editorial, "Horror in Peshawar" (Dec.16), describes the Taliban attack in Pakistan that left 140 children dead and states, "What happened there can only be described as an atrocity committed by murderous criminals." Why didn't The Sun equally condemn the actions of Israel, which caused...

  • Israel's actions in Gaza were self-defense
    Israel's actions in Gaza were self-defense

    In condemning Israel for finally taking action to counter terrorist and rocket attacks, Ray Gordon ignores the history of the last nine years of the conflict between Hamas and Israel ("Hold Israel accountable for war crimes," Dec. 23). After Israel voluntarily withdrew from Gaza without any reciprocity,...

  • What if Obama spoke to Knesset?
    What if Obama spoke to Knesset?

    I wonder how Benjamin Netanyahu would feel if President Barack Obama wrangled an invitation from an opposition Israeli politician to push the Obama-Iran plan in the Knesset without informing the Israeli prime minister ("Israel spy HQ bucking premier, opposing Iran sanctions," Jan. 23). But that's...

  • Netanyahu speech was pointed, not 'pointless'
    Netanyahu speech was pointed, not 'pointless'

    After reading the full text of the speech by Benjamin Netanyahu before the joint session of Congress, I beg to disagree with The Sun's analysis that the speech was pointless ("Netanyahu's speech," March 4). The Israeli prime minister described in detail the threat of a flawed nuclear agreement...

  • Netanyahu visit: Maybe Congress should delegate all its policy work to foreign leaders
    Netanyahu visit: Maybe Congress should delegate all its policy work to foreign leaders

    Has Speaker John Boehner has a brilliant idea in inviting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to Congress on the subject of Iran ("Netanyahu invitation unwise," Jan. 27). What else can he do when, apparently, no Republicans in the House have what it takes to address the issue? Why...

  • Palestinians have more to answer for at the ICC than Israel
    Palestinians have more to answer for at the ICC than Israel

    I must respond to your recent report that the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has launched a preliminary probe into alleged Israeli war crimes in the Palestinian territories ("International Criminal Court opens probe into possible war crimes in Palestinian territories," Jan. 17).

  • Let Netanyahu speak
    Let Netanyahu speak

    I find it necessary to respond to Frederic B. Hill's odious and erroneous op-ed, "Boehner's unwise move" (Jan. 28).

Comments
Loading

63°