Response to NYT: ‘Lost Tribe’ Finds Itself on Front Lines of Mideast Conflict”

Re: “‘Lost Tribe’ Finds Itself on Front Lines of Mideast Conflict,” Greg Myre, Dec. 22.

As far as I could discern from Myre’s article, Amishav is not bringing Bnei Menashe immigrants from India to “Israel”. Rather these Jewish immigrants are being brought from northeastern India to the occupied Palestinian territories where their presence contributes to the dispossession of Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Bumping desperate people up against one another like this is the height of irresponsibility. Ariel Sharon’s government has a responsibility — and a moral obligation — to use subsidies to steer these immigrants in the direction of settling within Israel rather than on land that will one day go to a Palestinian state.

Of course, if Sharon wants Israeli expansion then settling recent immigrants from India on Palestinian land is a sure-fire way to get it — along with considerable conflict and international condemnation. Is there nobody within the Likud willing to raise the alarm within the party that a policy that involves recent arrivals from India in dispossessing Palestinians is madness?


Michael F. Brown
Executive Director
Partners for Peace