Critics of placing an embassy in Jerusalem pander to demonisers etc

I refer to Peter Bishop’s view (Letters, 19/10) that Jerusalem should not be Israel’s capital because the Muslims (and Christians) have treated it as a holy city for centuries and is too sensitive a site, ignoring the fact that it has been the centre of Judaism for millennia. Jerusalem has been the home for Judaism for more than 3000 years.

Israel, while being the only democratic state in the Middle East, is the only Jewish state in the world; unlike the rest of the Middle East that is solidly Muslim and in many cases wishes to destroy Israel.

While many in the West still think a two-state solution can happen, the reality is that Hamas, funded and armed by Iran, has no intention of letting a two-state solution occur.

It is incumbent on the West to support Israel against this threat.

The positioning of foreign embassies in Israel is a sideshow for Islamic countries to demonise Israel and those countries who support Israel’s right to exist as the only democracy in the Middle East.

Simon Marston, Eltham, Vic

Alan Freeman (Letters, 18/10) claims that for decades Israel had accepted initiatives to resolve its conflict with the Palestinians, when the evidence is to the contrary. Israel has refused to cease settlement construction in the disputed territories, despite disavowal of the policy by most US presidents since 1948, while Israeli leaders have continued to pursue construction.

As well, Israel denies access to Palestinians to develop sites on the West Bank needed to develop a viable state.

Mark Awerbuch, Crafers, SA

Compassion deficit

Whoever thought the Liberal Party could be wedged on refugee policy (“PM opens the door to NZ solution”, 17/10)? The party’s willingness to at last send refugees to New Zealand is being blocked by Labor and the Greens because of Scott Morrison’s proviso that they must never be allowed to enter Australia. Not even to visit relatives, nor if they eventually have business ties with Australia.

This embargo was not placed on refugees who were sent to the US. The people of Wentworth see the treatment of children on Nauru by this government as cruel and inhumane and will vote accordingly.

Ray Armstrong, Tweed Heads, NSW

A two-caste society?

Henry Ergas raises the issue of New Zealand according Maoris special legal privileges — effectively turning the country into a two-caste society (“What we once accepted as personal is now emphatically political”, 19/10).

Through measures such as Aboriginal land corporations, and demands for constitutional recognition and exclusive forms of representation to all other citizens, we are well down the path of building a two-caste society in Australia.

While Israel is, perhaps, not a model we would choose to follow, many countries give special rights to ethnic majority groups. Is the equality of human beings that important?

Peter Egan, Artarmon, NSW

[Letters from The Australian 19/10/18]