David Friedman is the right choice for ambassador to Israel
I am responding to your recent editorial about the appointment of David Friedman as ambassador to Israel (“Can David Friedman Swap Vitriol for Diplomacy? Time Will Tell,” Ledger, Dec. 23).
As a bankruptcy lawyer, I can appreciate the attributes which David Friedman brings to his daunting new challenge as ambassador. While I don’t know Mr. Friedman personally, I understand that he brings the creative thinking, negotiating skills and patience which are necessary for bankruptcy lawyers to distinguish themselves in resolving intractable problems.
Dealing with the Israeli-Palestinian dilemma requires Mr. Friedman’s skill set much more than the attributes of career State Department employees. The situation cries out for someone who will not feel bound to pursue past approaches which have failed. We have chased a “two-state solution” for 20 years but have only more Palestinian terrorism to show for it. Even when offered a state, President Abbas has made clear that he will not acknowledge an end to “the conflict,” which is the raison d’etre of the two-state paradigm. Hopefully, Mr. Friedman will break free from that rut and offer new, more realistic solutions.
While many ambassadors have come from the private sector and served well, this appointment carries with it even greater promise in a time and place that cries out for Mr. Friedman’s talents.
Mark I. Fishman
The Ledger’s Dec. 23 editorial “Can David Friedman Swap Vitriol for Diplomacy? Time Will Tell” impresses me as a caution, maybe a fear, because President-elect Trump has selected a pro-Israel U.S. ambassador.
I suppose the Ledger would have found it more comforting if Mr. Trump would have selected anti-Israel Congressman Keith Ellison for ambassador to Israel, thus there would be no tilted support that would be of benefit to the Jewish state. If Ellison didn’t want it, how about antisemite Pastor Jeremiah Wright?
If the Jews won’t stand up for themselves, why should anyone else?