I was hoping to find mention in “The Jewish Traveler: Zikhron Ya’akov” (June/July issue) of the Meir Shfeyah Youth Aliyah Village located five minutes [away]. In 1923, Baron Edmond de Rothschild gave the lands of Shfeyah to Henrietta Szold, where she established one of Hadassah’s three Youth Aliyah villages for orphans and refugees.
Today, Shfeyah, with Hadassah’s support, continues to thrive, providing a home, education and work training to 250 residential students and 300 nonresidential students. To arrange a visit, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 011-972-4-639-0750.
Lauren Stern Kedem
Meir Shfeyah, Israel
Both the article by David Makovsky (“Letter from Washington: Can They Work It Out?”) and the interview with Tzipi Livni (both in the June/July issue) imply that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is mishandling the peace process. Livni is particularly insistent on differentiating between Hamas and “moderates” like Mahmoud Abbas. Unfortunately, Abbas is no moderate; he has not disowned any of Yasser Arafat’s hardline positions, demanding resettlement of millions of Palestinians in Israel, removal of all Israeli settlements from the West Bank and Israel’s return to the pre-1967 cease-fire lines. In fact, he differs from Hamas only in tactical terms: Hamas calls for Israel’s destruction while Abbas is willing to wait for the Arabs to become a majority and vote Israel out of existence.
Instead of pressuring Israel, President Obama should be urging the Palestinians to open meaningful negotiations on the basis of Netanyahu’s vision of a demilitarized Palestinian nation, outlined in his June 2009 speech. Acceptance of Israel’s existence as the nation-state of the Jews is the first step on the path to true peace.
Toby F. Block
Some years ago I suffered from two painful foot conditions. Among other things, [my orthopedist] recommended costly orthotics, which I had to wear in unattractive shoes. On a trip to New York, I discovered Israel’s BeautiFeel shoes (“For All Walks of Life,” June/July issue) at Footlights at 1062 Third Avenue and promptly bought three pairs of heels. I no longer had to avoid fashion to feel comfortable.
On two subsequent trips to Israel, I bought more pairs at the BeautiFeel store in Dizengoff Mall. Slowly, I discarded all of my old shoes in favor of BeautiFeel sandals, wedges and heels. They are padded in just the right places and a relief to wear, yet so stylish I always get compliments.
In the Boston area, they are available at Simon’s on Harvard Avenue in Brookline, and I also have ordered them online from Footwear, etc (1-800-720-0572; www.footwearetc.com). Three cheers for BeautiFeel for helping me be pain-free and fashionable.
San Antonio, TX
Historian researching Eleanor Roosevelt, Jewish refugees and the birth of Israel seeks transcripts or recordings of speeches by Roosevelt to Hadassah or other Jewish groups between 1933 and 1962 or news clippings quoting her speeches. Significant stories about Roosevelt and Jewish refugees, Hadassah, Youth Aliyah or Israel also welcome. Please contact jsears7@ gmail.com or 413-446-8992.
John F. Sears, Ph.D.
The town of Cocoa, Florida, is the sister city of Beit Shemesh, not Coco Beach, as we indicated in “Inside Hadassah” in the June/July issue.