Letters to the Editor | June 13 edition

Readers write in about the Vashon Island School District, and Palestine and Israel.


What would Middle Earth be without Frodo?

What would Narnia be without Aslan?

What would Hogwarts be without Harry Potter?

What would 17 Cherry Tree Lane be without Mary Poppins?

What would Oz be without Dorothy?

What would Avonlea be without Anne-with-an-e?

What will McMurray Middle School be without Julie Jaffe?

Due to budget cuts, McMurray Middle School library hours were halved, leading to the early retirement of one of the most-beloved staff members on the McMurray campus.

What a devastating loss to our school community and to future McMurray students who will not have the gift of Ms. Jaffe as librarian. Hats off to Ms. Jaffe for all the students she inspired, the lives she changed, and the imaginations she fueled. You will be unspeakably missed.

Erin Simmons


Thank you, Shelly Simon, for your letter to The Beachcomber on June 6, re: Palestinians.

I was raised to believe that Israel was the victim, that Israelis did indeed make the desert bloom, that they came to an empty land to make a safe home.

I read Exodus as a teenager. Then I began to meet people with firsthand knowledge of what has been going on there. From them I heard stories of Palestinians being forced from their homes, not even allowed to bring their tools with them because the settlers would need them.

I learned that 400-year-old Palestinian olive orchards were being destroyed by Israeli forces. A young woman from the town I was living in, Rachel Corrie, was killed when an Israeli tank “accidentally” ran over her; she was trying to protect a Palestinian home with a family inside from being destroyed by the tank.

This horror was not an isolated incident. More atrocities are still happening today, and were happening long before October 7.

I learned of Israeli settlements established illegally in Palestine, and how the roads to them were closed to Palestinian people to use or even to cross. Recently I read “The Untempered Wind” by Christina Jones, a Quaker woman who lived in Ramallah for 40 years, before and after Israel declared its nationhood after WWII.

She chronicles Zionist terrorism — the bombing of the King David Hotel killing nearly one hundred people; the bombing of a house, which killed several generations of people; the bombing of infrastructure, making power outages frequent; and bombing of railways — as the Zionists began to take over Palestine even before Israel was declared a nation.

If Israel is as good at finding “terrorists” (Hamas) as I have been told, there should be no need to destroy apartment buildings, hospitals, and refugee camps — killing thousands of innocent people — to find and arrest or kill them.

Suzanna Leigh