September 16, 2019

Letters to the Editor: StandWithUs, Israel and heroism

StandWithUs Stands Up for Itself

Congratulations to the Jewish Journal for your cover story about George Deek (“The Minister of Unification,” April 28). That said, the international staff at StandWithUs were collectively shocked and hurt to see the article so grossly misrepresent us, with the claim that “even staunchly pro-Israel groups like StandWithUs, which resist dialogue with Arabs, have invited Deek to speak.”

The notion that StandWithUs “resists dialogue with Arabs” could not be further from the truth. One of the core principles that motivates us, besides our love for Israel, is that education and dialogue are the road to peace. In addition to our very popular English Facebook page (, we have one of the largest Facebook pages that educates about Israel in Arabic (, reaching over a million users each week, the bulk of whom are from the West Bank, Gaza, Egypt, Jordan and other surrounding Arab countries. We also create videos in Arabic and have Muslim Arabs working as part of our educational team in our Jerusalem office.

We have always supported efforts to encourage dialogue, cooperation, mutual respect and peace between Israel and its neighbors. It is important that StandWithUs is recognized and saluted for our cutting-edge work in this regard and not misrepresented.

Roz Rothstein, CEO, StandWithUs

Editor’s note: The Journal regrets this mischaracterization.

Journal Is All About Zionism

I am sorry the Jewish Journal isn’t named the Zionist Journal, because it seems the publication’s main objective is to savor Israel, not Judaism.

In reading the Israel Independence Day issue (April 28), I see gaping holes in the history the Journal provides, namely David Suissa’s history of Israel, which has no mention of any Protestant faction conducting any groundwork for Israel. The consistent refusal by Jewish writers to give Protestants credit in the formation of Israel smacks that Zionist Jews did it all themselves. For Pete’s sake: No Protestants, no Israel. (May I suggest Don Lewis’ book “Origins of Christian Zionism”?)

I suppose more free reading material is a good thing here at the Montecito Starbucks but, so far, I find the Jewish Journal offending and misnamed.

Matt McLaughlin, Santa Barbara

Journal’s Direction Is Clear

Just finished reading the latest Jewish Journal paper with my son looking over my shoulder. We both said out loud to each other simultaneously, “Disgusting leftists.”

A. Joans, Los Angeles

Story of Heroic Pilot Lifts Us All

As a survivor who was the recipient of food and clothing from the Joint Distribution Committee immediately after World War II, I am deeply moved by the efforts of Sam Lewis, Al Schwimmer and many, many more American Jews of their generation who spared no time nor money to come to the rescue of the remnants of European Jewry, and thereafter to help, at enormous cost and great risks, the pioneers of the new Jewry in Palestine to transform the land into statehood (“With Israel’s Survival Up in the Air, Pilot Sam Lewis Went Above and Beyond,” April 28). 

I thank the Jewish Journal for bringing the Sam Lewis story to its readership on the 69th anniversary of Israel’s independence. What an appropriate occasion.

I am fortunate to know Sandra Brown and her husband, Buddy. Sandra is a devoted daughter of Sam Lewis and a true daughter of Israel.

Ken Lautman, Los Angeles

Taking Southern Comfort in Thriving Judaism

I loved the weft and weave of the Passover journey described by rabbinic student Rob Friedman of his Passover pilgrimage in the Jewish enclaves of the American South (“Jewish Life Alive and Well in the South,” April 28).

Friedman gave life to the contemporary stories of Jews and their communities who are usually below the Jewish communal radar and are often missed.

Pini Herman via email