Monday, May 20, 2024

How did Basketball Ireland think it appropriate to go ahead with Israel game?

Must read

In fact, the president of Israel’s basketball association confirmed links between their women’s basketball squad and the Israeli army, admitting that they participated “in a number of activities and events throughout the country in co-operation with them”.

They also invited soldiers, with assault rifles on display, to visit a training session ahead of their European Championship qualifier against Ireland.

On top of that, one of their squad, Dor Saar, publicly accused the Irish of being “quite antisemitic”, presumably because of widespread disquiet in this country regarding the treatment of Palestinians.

Unfortunately, this is an accusation that is now almost routinely deployed to silence legitimate criticism of Israel. Antisemitism is a real problem in the world and should not be confused with censure of the Israeli state because of human rights concerns.

Is Basketball Ireland paying attention? Does it really think it was appropriate to go ahead with the game against Israel? What sort of message did that send to people suffering in Gaza? Perhaps a bit more reflection would be useful in the future.

Fintan Lane, Lucan, Co Dublin

Time for Government to enforce sanctions before more children are killed

Last Tuesday I wrote about six-year-old Hind who was trapped in a car with the bodies of her family who had been shot by the Israeli military in Gaza. (‘We should ask why lives of Gazan children are not being seen as important,’ Letters, February 6). After her 15-year-old cousin Layan was shot while on the phone to the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS), they managed to get Hind on the phone, keeping her on the line for three hours trying to comfort her. Hind asked the PRCS to rescue her, saying, “I’m so scared, please come”.

Under co-ordination with Israeli authorities, PRCS sent two ambulance crew to rescue Hind. On Saturday, February 10 – 12 days later – the ambulance was discovered bombed in the Tal Al-Hawa area of Gaza City, the two crew members Yusuf Zeino and Ahmed Al-Madhoun killed. Hind’s body was also found.

The final hours of this little girl’s life are unimaginable: alone, afraid, in the dark, surrounded by her dead family. The cruelty is unspeakable.

Hind is one child, one of the more than 11,500 Palestinian children murdered by Israel in Gaza since October 7. And just as we know her name, we should know the name of every child killed and mourn every one of them.

And we should demand that there are no more murdered and broken children, no more families sundered.

We should demand that our Government finally act to sanction Israel and do its utmost to protect the Palestinian people, to uphold our responsibilities under the United Nations Genocide Convention and to prevent further slaughter in Gaza, especially now as the Israeli government is threatening the 1.2 million people in Rafah with ethnic cleansing. There are no excuses, every day of inaction means more stories like Hind’s.

Zoe Lawlor, Chairperson, Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Dublin 1

Donald Trump is pulling the migration strings for his own political benefit

It is almost inconceivable that the party of Ronald Reagan could reject comprehensive border and immigration reform that they demanded for months, and for which they leveraged aid to Ukraine – risking the defeat of that fledgling democratic ally to the unprovoked and brutal onslaught of Russia.

This treachery will also perpetuate rampant illegal immigration, infiltration by the cartels and the ongoing fentanyl crisis, which is tearing at the fabric of American society. Donald Trump, a failed president, friend of dictators and Nazis, pathological liar, convicted fraudster, person found in law to have committed sexual assault, and not to mention a narcissistic, orange-tinted buffoon, instigated this Machiavellian manoeuvre solely for partisan political purposes.

Trump and most Republicans in Congress have betrayed the nation’s interests in order to allow him to campaign on the issue of a broken immigration system, rather than hand Joe Biden a political victory for solving the issue. In so doing, Trump has shown himself to be treasonous – an offence he had previously levelled at whistleblower Edward Snowden and General Mark Milley, insinuating traitors should be executed.

However, they both acted conscientiously and in the best interest of America, while Trump did not, never has and never will. If he can regain the White House, he will pardon himself and in so doing, perpetrate the greatest grift of all.

R Healy, Mullagh, Co Cavan

Arsonists need to come back to sanity and realise this country is not ‘full’

When I was young, the council houses built for Irish people were likely to have their windows broken if it was feared that families with tuberculosis might be granted one. As if that was going to keep them away.

Fear was a stupid emotion in that context, just as it is in the horror of burning out buildings where those in need might potentially be given a roof over their heads.

Those responsible for this must think of the suffering children around the world, as in Gaza, and find your way back to sanity. Ireland is not full, and what we need is for more accommodation to be built. These “patriotic” criminals must realise that this is not a crisis, and apply some basic decency and humanity.

Robert Sullivan, Bantry, Co Cork

What’s in a name? Turns out baby-naming is a lot more work than you think

I refer to the lady seeking advice from Katie Byrne regarding her new baby’s name (‘My husband wants to call our firstborn son after his dad, but I don’t like the name at all’, Lifestyle, February 9). I was faced with a similar dilemma once. My wife suggested the name Tony. I disagreed, pointing out that every Tom, Dick and Harry was named Tony.

Noel Kelly, Doonbeg, Co Clare

Dublin city traffic may be easing over summer, but tempers will be heating up

While there may be no cross-town traffic through Dublin from August, you can be sure that there will be plenty of cross drivers.

Peter Declan O’Halloran, Belturbet, Co Cavan

Latest article