Israel does world a truly great service

I want to thank Israel for keeping America safe. If it fails, Islamic and Hamas terrorists have vowed to come after the West, especially America, in their quest to spread Islam worldwide. I thank Israelis for their daily sacrifices and noble effort at peace, and for destroying the terrorists' tunnels whose sole purpose is to kidnap and kill innocent citizens.

I hope Palestinians get the courage to get rid of the delusional Hamas terrorists who do not have their backs and who sing for the destruction of Israel and call for rivers of blood to flow around the world.

I want to thank Israel for sending leaflets to innocent Palestinians, urging them not to stand on rooftops and take a bullet for Hamas; for not worshiping chaos, hatred, blood and mayhem.

I want to thank America for not choosing to be on the side of misguided and toxic Hamas terrorists. Thanks to the 90 percent of Americans who support Israel. Thanks for supporting Israel, which does not keep its people in poverty, does not depend on universal ignorance of its people to maintain power.

As Golda Meir once said: Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.

Let's pray for peace.

Linda Smith

San Leandro


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Made wrong vote on BART's free passes

My wife and I were already displeased with Rebecca Saltzman because of the manner in which the board mishandled the negotiations with the unions some months ago.

This latest piece of self-serving management in which the board voted to continue to provide lifetime ridership for its members, spouses and dependent children is the capper. Only the board members themselves should have that privilege. And then only while they are in office.

When BART is strapped for revenue, the board should not be so casual about giving up $741,000 a year by allowing family members to ride free. It is irresponsible for Saltzman and the other board members to continue this policy for family members in any way, shape or form.

We plan to vote for her opponent in the upcoming election in November. Other concerned citizens should also not vote for any incumbent in their district. This is the only way the board will get the message.

Richard Solomon

Oakland

GOP the reasonable ones on immigration

Eugene Robinson's piece "GOP simply absent on immigration" is simply absent on facts and logic.

First, he states that President Barack Obama "has no choice but to act on his own." Robinson wants Obama to violate our Constitution because our duly elected Congress will not pass laws that Obama demands. That is not how our government is supposed to work, but to Robinson the ends apparently justify the means.

He says Republicans "love to forget that (President Ronald) Reagan was responsible for the last big amnesty in 1986." The opposite is true: Republicans have repeatedly pointed out that Reagan insisted on border security first as part of the package. We got the amnesty but Democrats reneged and canceled the border security. Republicans know that Democrats will pull the same bait-and-switch again.

Thus, they rightly demand verifiable border security with a verifiable decrease in illegal crossings before any other comprehensive package. They know that comprehensive reform always means amnesty first. Republicans have also repeatedly stated that they want a guest worker program. Sounds to me like voices of reason amid the shrill demands of those like Robinson.

George Mate

Castro Valley

Council failed local residents on DMC

I'm all for solar power and student scholarships, but I feel strongly that Doctors Medical Center, a community hospital that sees thousands of patients in its emergency room each year and saves many lives, should have funding priority over the pet projects of some members of the Richmond City Council.

However, behind closed doors, the Richmond City Council decided that $90 million from Chevron should go to projects that do not include DMC, which has no funding source and is slated to close this September.

When the closure happens, the people of Richmond and the surrounding communities will lose the nearby hospital where doctors save heart attack victims, repair broken hips, and remove ruptured appendices.

When the hospital no longer exists and the doctors are gone, remember what the Richmond City Council failed to do.

Dr. Lorna Cogen

Berkeley