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Letters, Aug. 28

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Inflaming Mideast conflict

Rachelle Friesen, though purporting to be a friend to the Palestinians, does anything but tell the truth to her Palestinian friends (Settlers and the unwanted, Aug. 26).

One would have hoped that Friesen, an outsider, would have brought to the Palestinian community in the West Bank and Gaza a sense of reality. Instead, the opposite has happened: Friesen has become a prisoner of the anti-Zionist narrative.

The opinion piece is a Middle East example of the Stockholm syndrome, an echo of the anti-Zionist mindset which has generated the woes the Palestinians face for generations.

The only hope for an end to the suffering of the Palestinians is the rejection of the anti-Zionist beliefs which fuel the conflict. As long as terrorists continue to attack Israel, Israel will continue to defend itself. Those who repeat the anti-Zionist propaganda, which has generated the conflict, both continue and inflame it.

David Matas

Senior honorary counsel, B'nai Brith Canada


Former Tory chief paid the price

I was disappointed to see Aldo Santin's article Regrets over tweet (Aug. 26) regarding the photo of Taras Sokolyk and mayoral candidate Judy Wasylycia-Leis.

This was a community event marking Ukrainian independence -- why did the writer have to bring up past events from 20 years ago?

Everyone makes mistakes, and Sokolyk made one; he paid the price and moved on. Let bygones be bygones.

Miroslav Mulko



Berry much about nothing

Until the controversy arose, I had never heard of a "juneberry" (Berry battle, Aug. 27).

After all the aggravation that Canadian Saskatoon producers have gone through to get the fruit into the European community, this new wrinkle is a bit much to accept. The name "Saskatoon" has been around a lot longer than "Juneberry," what with the former coming from the Cree language.

The abundance of this fruit along the Meewasin Valley of the South Saskatchewan River led the Barr colonists to name their settlement "Saskatoon." So, to help Americans who may have trouble pronouncing the word, should the city should change its name to "Juneville"?

Which luminary decided on "Juneberry"? It has been known by a number of other names: Pacific/western serviceberry, alder-leaf shadbush, dwarf shadbush, chucley pear, western juneberry and, historically, pigeon berry. "Juneberry" has the least panache.

Don Adamson



Adjust lights on Route 90

With all the construction on Route 90, have traffic lights been adjusted during rush hour?

On Wednesday, what is normally a 15-minute drive to work took 45 minutes. It seems the feeder streets -- Ness, Silver, St. Matthews and Ellice avenues -- have far less traffic that need to access Route 90 during rush hour.

Would it not make sense to have the timing of the green lights on the route extended so traffic flow is enhanced?

Naomi Finkelstein



Vet received more than zero

In Fantino failing veterans (Aug. 23), Deveryn Ross singled out the case of local veteran Glen Kirkland, who told Ross that "since I have been released I have had zero coverage."

Last December, Kirkland appeared before the Veterans Affairs parliamentary committee in Ottawa, where I asked him about the coverage he has received from the Government of Canada.

His response? Since leaving the Forces, he received a tax-free lump-sum payment of $250,000 from the Government of Canada -- clearly a lot more than "zero coverage."

Further, Ross acknowledged Kirkland is in the process of applying for additional funding that is available from our government.

As a veteran of the Royal Canadian Air Force myself, I am grateful to Kirkland for his service to our country, and am happy to learn he has been able to build up a local real estate practice since leaving the forces.

However, as a member of Parliament, I also believe Canadians whose tax dollars have funded Kirkland's lump-sum payment of $250,000 are entitled to not have their financial contributions dismissed as nothing or "zero."

Laurie Hawn

Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre and official member of the standing committee on veterans affairs


Singer doesn't represent Métis youth

Ray St. Germain is a great representative of the Manitoba Metis Federation, but this is part of a program that focuses on Métis youth in the opening ceremonies (Museum rejects St. Germain, Aug. 27).

It's like casting Anthony Hopkins as a young Harry Potter just because he's British and a distinguished actor.

This is about age-appropriate casting -- let the Canadian Museum for Human Rights do the artistic part of their job.

Luba Gallinger


Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 28, 2014 A10


Updated on Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 7:03 AM CDT: adds image

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