Sir: Former prime minister Tony Abbott is clearly on the money when he argues that the Australian taxpayer should cease funding the Palestinian Authority.
Mahmoud Abbas the head of the Palestinian authority last year stated that ‘In a final resolution, we will not allow the presence of a single Jews, civilian or soldier on our lands.’ The PA have repeatedly stated that ‘From the river to the sea Palestine will be free’. In other words from Jordan to the Mediterranean – the whole of Israel! The PA are not by any definition a partner for peace with Israel but rather an extremist and violent regime.
The Palestinian Authority hasn’t held an election since the Dead Sea first started feeling poorly, it is thus best described as an illegitimate regime not a democratic government and as such Abbott is right – it should receive no financial support from Australian taxpayers.
Surrey Hills, Vic
Sir: If there existed any legal or moral justification for Israeli settlements on Palestinian land, presumably your editorial of 7 January would have mentioned it?
Sir: That was a great article on immigration by Michael Davis [31 Dec 16]. Sadly, when I’d finished reading it I thought, ‘How I wish that had been written by Malcolm Turnbull’.
Something very similar to Michael’s erudite text was succinctly aired by a neighbor at a weekend BBQ.
Paradise Waters, Qld
Sir: In his Notes (7 January), Charles Moore explores the uncharacteristic reaction of Matthew Parris to the referendum result. What is most puzzling about Parris and so many others like him is that their present outrage has so little in common with their rather tepid support for the EU in the run-up to the vote. Such a mismatch of cause and effect suggests a Freudian explanation may be appropriate. When an impulse is felt to be so dire that it cannot be expressed, a new object is substituted and the feelings are thus ventilated. Yet what original threat could be so catastrophic as to provoke such end-of-our-world hysteria in the first place?
Sir: I share Rod Liddle’s admiration for Ms Anne Maple, who is being persecuted by Lewisham Council officials for daring to put up posters in support of her beliefs (‘My poster girl for free speech’, 7 January). With only a single non-Labour councillor, Lewisham Council is typical of Labour’s rotten boroughs in which dogmatic political correctness is normal, routine incompetence goes unnoticed and questions about dubious business deals are shrugged off. They get away with it because there’s no effective opposition to their rule. As John Maples (no relation), Conservative MP in the west of the borough during the 1980s, said, ‘Lewisham is three square miles of concrete with no identity, where many constituents don’t even know which borough they live in.’ There are now, at least, signs of a grass-roots fightback, and the council’s plans to compulsorily purchase land around Millwall Football Club are not going through as quietly as they hoped.
Taking back control
Sir: Craig Goldsack (Letters, 7 January) was quite incorrect to say that there was no Church of England until the Reformation in 1534. Henry VIII’s reforms were clearly not seeking to create a new entity called the Church of England — a church which has since counted among her members Alban, Augustine of Canterbury and Thomas à Becket. Rather, they were taking power back so that the realm was ‘free from subjection to any man’s laws, but only to such as have been devised, made, and ordained within this realm, for the wealth of the same’ (Act forbidding Papal Dispensations, 1534). I ought not to make any comparison with the mind of the British people as expressed last year.
Fr Simon Morris
St Mary, Tottenham, London N17
Someone likes you, Katie
Sir: Unlike Tanya Gold (‘Dumb and dumber’, 7 January), I like Katie Hopkins: she is outspoken and brave and the world would be a much duller place without her.
Sir: As a self-declared alumnus, Charles Moore does Cambridge University no service as an advertisement for its success in imparting the skills of reasoned argument (Notes, 7 January). His response to remarks made by my colleague Peter de Bolla, drawing attention, in his capacity as chair of the English faculty, to certain facts of the university’s funding from EU sources, gallops recklessly off-track to a spectacular non sequitur of a conclusion: ‘Cambridge University was 800 years old in 2009. Except for the last 40 years, it has managed without grants from Brussels. It can find a creative way through this, if it wants to.’ Perhaps Mr Moore would say the same in respect of the university’s recent reliance, historically speaking, on running water and electricity.
King’s College, Cambridge