Letters to the Editor

Settlements are not the cause of attacks

Your May 27 column from the Los Angeles Times was a travesty of the truth. Writer Dan Simon's concentration on settlements thwarting peace between the Palestinians and Israel ignores the real issues.

The United Nations in 1947 partitioned two-thirds of the land to the Palestinians and one-third to the Jewish people. The Arab nations refused to accept their two-thirds and five Arab nations attacked the newly formed, democratic government of Israel in 1948, and then again in 1956 and in 1967. There were no settlements in Israel between 1948 and 1967.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Congress on May 24: "Israel will never again accept indefensible boundaries." No nation is expected to. Netanyahu also said, "All I want Abbas to say is, 'I will accept a Jewish state, and everything is negotiable.' "

Settlements are an outcome, not a cause, of Arab enmity toward Israel.

Israel made painful choices by dismantling the Sinai settlements when Egypt's Anwar Sadat made peace with Israel in 1979.

Israel dismantled settlements in Gaza in 2005 as a peace initiative with the Palestinians. The Palestinian response was the election of Hamas to power. Our State Department and Treasury Department label Hamas a terrorist organization. A Hamas covenant states that the extermination of the Jewish state of Israel is the only solution; and from 2007 to 2009, Hamas launched 8,500 rockets into Israel.

Charles L. Richman

Fripp Island