Letters to the Editor: Nov. 2009

The Vienna Review welcomes letters from its readers.

To the Editor,

I just read the review of the Leipzig Ballet by Cynthia Peck, which was mostly an article about Uwe Scholz and his work the Vienna Review [July-August issue]. As a close friend of Uwe, I was most impressed and also a bit moved by the description of his achievements and his motivation.

It was one of the best pieces I ever read about him.

Ms. Peck’s  perceptiveness is truly exceptional. Thank you for the wonderful article, which I shall pass on to the company in Leipzig.

I am sure the dancers will like it too.  Likewise I shall copy it to other people who loved Uwe and will enjoy these comments.

Doris Benner


To the Editor,

I read with great interest the article by Mehru Jaffer “A Plea for Peace” in the April issue [at www.viennareview.net] concerning bereaved Palestinian and Israeli family members.

With every respect for the loss of a dear child, which must be the greatest loss, I would like to make a few comments:

a) As we have seen in the South African example, true reconciliation can only be reached when the basic wrong is put right.   In the case of South Africa, it was the end of Apartheid.   In the case of Israel and Palestine this wrong has not yet been put right and that is the military occupation of Palestinian land and the apology which should be made about the original crime, which was the ethnic cleansing of Palestine in 1948.  (I need only refer to your excellent interview with the Israeli historian, Ilan Pappe.)

b) It is hard to understand  that the murder of a young man who was serving military duty in the Occupied Palestinian Territories can be equated with that of an innocent person, a 1948 refugee, who was carrying food for his family. Or, for that matter, a prisoner who died of cancer after leaving an Israeli jail.  We know that ill people in these prisons do not get proper medical treatment and that there have been 650,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons since 1967, many of them innocent.

c) I do not believe that one can treat the situation by not dealing with its political side.  This conflict is highly political and responsible for thousands of deaths, as we have seen in the recent invasion of the Gaza Strip.  Peace will only achieved when justice for both peoples is achieved.

Unfortunately, with the new right-wing Israeli Government,  this is hardly going to be the case.

Paula Abrams-Hourani

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