Russia has every right to intervene in Ukraine
I would like to respond to two articles in your April 24 edition, “Transcending the anger and injustice” and “Will Russia missile deal with Iran end Israel’s silence on Ukraine?”
Avner Eliyahu Romm
Unlike the artificial “rainbow nation” in South Africa (a country with completely different nations with completely different traditions and which, as a country, is a result of an agreement between the British and the Boers, which ended the Second Anglo-Boer War), Ukraine is the birthplace of the Russian nation.
It should have a good relationship with Russia and is a victim of foreign powers forcefully ousting a democratically-elected government and installing a self-hating fascist one (which supports the same criminals who murdered Jews during the Second World War).
So, Russia has every reason to intervene in Ukraine, something which regrettably it doesn’t. There are only Russian, Chechen, Serb and other volunteers fighting for the democratic pro-Russian side, while there are Western, Croatian, other Chechen and ISIS volunteers for the regime’s side.
Israel should, of course, defend Jews in East Ukraine; Israel was created to defend Jews, and of course Israel has no reason to support a Western-installed regime which glorifies those who fought on the Nazi side during the war.
As for statues and xenophobia in South Africa: I have never heard about any xenophobic attacks during apartheid. I hope and pray that the Cape will achieve independence following the 2016 municipal elections, and I hope and pray that statues of great people will stay or be installed, while those which don’t belong in the Cape (those of Mandela, Chris Hani and Queen Victoria) will be removed.
Disparaging image contributes to stigma about weight
The article by Mirah Langer, “How COVID-19 lockdown turned eating upside down”, SA Jewish Report, 29 April, was well written, highlighting how people are struggling to maintain a healthy relationship with food and their bodies since the lockdown.
Unfortunately, the original online and print versions were accompanied by an awful image – one that perpetuates weight bias and weight stigma. I was relieved to see that the online image had already been changed by Friday, 30 April, however, the awful image made it to print.
I’m therefore writing this letter to educate those working in media and healthcare about the dangers of using images that depict people in larger bodies in a disparaging way as it contributes to weight bias and stigma. Weight bias is defined as negative, prejudiced attitudes about weight, with overt manifestations of weight stigma and discrimination.
Unfortunately, weight bias and stigma have a psychological and physical impact on health, contributing directly to anxiety, depression, disordered eating behaviours, high blood pressure, high cortisol levels, and systemic inflammation. To the person responsible for changing the image online so quickly, thank you for a job well done! – Gayle Landau, Registered non-diet dietician and certified intuitive eating counsellor, and member of Non-Diet South Africa for healthcare professionals
Looking for descendants of Lithuanian great-grandfather
I would be grateful for any information a reader may have as I search for descendants of my great-grandfather, Eliahu Zvi Bloch, a Kohen who lived in Anassisic/Anusshishok, Lithuania, near the Latvian border, from roughly 1820 to 1900.
My grandfather, Elchanon, the son of Eliahu Zvi and his third wife, Sarah Oralowich, who grew up in an orphanage, is the only one of the family who emigrated to the United States. I recall hearing that some of Elchanon’s siblings or half-siblings emigrated to South Africa in the first half of the last century.
I know very little else. I believe the family migrated to Lithuania from Germany around 1750 or 1800, that Eliahu Zvi’s father lived to be 100, and that Eliahu Zvi was 66 years old when my grandfather was born. It’s possible that some family members migrated to Israel, either prior to statehood or after living in South Africa. I would welcome any information, even if marginally related to my family, such as knowledge of life in Anassisic/Anusshishok. I live in Silver Spring, Maryland, United States, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Only those on the frontline should be vaccinated
I read in dismay of doctors, often in private practice who never see a COVID-19-positive patient, who are rushing off with their wives and administration clerks to get to the front of the queue to be vaccinated. I see psychologists and other allied professionals flaunting the fact that they have been vaccinated or elbowing their way to the vaccine table.
While this happens, nearly a million health workers in the public sector who are actually dealing with COVID-19-positive patients in surgery, anaesthetics, intensive-care units, and emergency departments, treating patients with hands-on care, haven’t yet received their vaccinations. These are the frontline workers who are at risk. These are the doctors, nurses, and allied professionals who are dying. They aren’t there for the glory or the large salary but because they are committed to making a difference, to healing, and to contributing to a better world. I urge all of you who aren’t dealing directly with patients who breathe, cough, or spit at you, who can treat patients while maintaining a social distance and wearing masks, not to rush to the front of the queue. Leave the limited supply of vaccines for the real frontline workers. Everyone will get a vaccine. You may have to wait a few more months, but in the meantime, you can take precautions and be safe.
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