The coveted Spotty (tm) - graphic by Tild
by Steve Timmer
Mar 9, 2024, 11:00 AM

Charley Underwood wins a Spotty ™

I have known Charley Underwood for almost twenty years now. He is a gentlemen, in the original sense of the term, unfailingly kind and possessing a pacific nature. He’s also a keen observer of current events. Charley wins a Spotty™ for this letter to the editor in the Star Tribune this past week.

If you wonder what the world did while over 6 million Jews were exterminated in World War II, it was exactly what we are doing now while Palestinians are being slaughtered. After the unspeakable horror of the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks, the Israelis have killed over 30,000 (mostly women and children), destroyed 80% of all Gaza housing, and are starving and bombing the survivors.

Beyond these grim facts is the deeper loss of the ancient Jewish tradition of justice, the dishonoring of those who died in Hitler’s Holocaust, and a rise in antisemitic and Islamophobic hate crimes. The brutal Hamas attack is apparently working as intended, as Israel’s inhumanity in responding focuses the world’s attention on Israel’s long-ignored suppression and ethnic cleansing of Palestine. Israel is becoming a pariah state.

Maybe you don’t care because they are far away, or the news is too depressing to watch. But then you are blind to the danger this conflict risks in our own backyard. There have already been cross-border attacks by Israel (against targets in Lebanon, Syria and Gaza), by Hamas (against Israel), by the U.S. (against Yemen, Syria and Iraq), and by Britain (against Yemen). Some of these countries are nuclear-armed. How long will it take until other countries become directly involved? A permanent cease-fire is needed for the protection of civilians on both sides, but it is also needed for our own safety, so we are not drawn into a larger war.

Charles Underwood, Minneapolis

Remember, a Spotty™ is awarded for an op-ed, letter to the editor, or web article or comment that I wish I had written myself.

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