ANDY Stenton (Letters, January 19), writing from the comfort of his home in Glasgow at a distance from the Israel-Hamas war, has absorbed much or all of the pro-Palestinian narrative. Absent from his letter is any reference to the fact that since 1948 Israel has been subject to constant, unremitting terrorism.

To counterbalance Mr Stenton’s viewpoint look inside Israel for an example of peaceful co-existence. Israel has an Arab population of 20%, fully, peacefully and economically integrated into Israeli society at every level. He might be surprised to learn that the IDF has a unit of Arab volunteers, with Israel's highest-ranking Muslim soldier being an Arab Muslim, Major Alaa Waheeb.

What he overlooks is the constancy from outside Israel of provocation from unremitting terrorism committed against Israel which demands a forceful response. Examples of Arab terrorism are not new; in fact they extend back to 1929 when the unprovoked barbaric massacre of Jews of Hebron took place, notably well before the existence of Israel or West Bank. Hebron, 1929 was a precedent for the level of barbarity of October 7. How can any country accept the terrorist bombings over a number of years of buses, cafes, university restaurants, hotel dining rooms, car rammings, stabbings, mostly emanating from the West Bank?

Israel is a mere nine miles wide from the city of Netanya on Israel’s Mediterranean coast, indicating how tiny the country actually is, about the size of Wales, surrounded by numerically far greater enemies dedicated to its destruction. Consequently it has been compelled to possess a modern efficient and deterrent army. Israel occupies a mere 0.6% of the Middle East, but even that crumb of territory is too much for some to accept. Surrounded by the constant threat of annihilation Israel’s response must necessarily be vigorous as it is facing an existential threat.

It should not be overlooked that the fatality rate in Gaza includes dead Hamas operatives and victims arising from a proportion of stray Hamas rockets which landed in residential areas, such as occurred at the Shifa Hospital when around 50 civilian victims were killed. Included also are deaths from natural causes. Children, innocent victims, were unfortunately inevitably included, but children in Israel were also brutally mutilated and murdered on October 7.

It is terrorism which has necessitated Israel’s vigorous response. Without such a response Hamas’s stated and written threat is to obliterate Israel and its Jews, and if October 7 was an example, it implies also the total eradication of all living persons, Muslims included, simply for acknowledging the existence of Israel.

Myer Green, Netanya, Israel (formerly of G77 postcode area).

Read more: Palestinians have a right to defend themselves from Israel

• IN a recent Channel 4 News interview after his speech to the Fabian Society had been interrupted five times by pro-Palestine supporters, a very animated David Lammy MP mentioned that he had recently been to Israel six times. At that point a truly investigative journalist may have asked why an MP whose job when not in government is to serve his constituents, visited a specific foreign country six times, and basic questions as to why he was there and who paid for the trips.

At that point it may have been revealed that Mr Lammy is one of several Labour MPs who are members of a parliamentary pressure group Labour Friends of Israel and an opportunity taken to question him on the funding and aims of that organisation. Perhaps if one of the demonstrators had been interviewed they may have supplied that information.

David J Crawford, Glasgow.

How generous will Fujitsu be?

I AM being, I think, understandably cynical when I doubt Fujitsu's commitment to making a proper contribution to the damage it has caused to so many people. Apart from the sight of its CEO scuttling away from television interview at Davos, it's interesting to note that the UK boss, Paul Patterson, has acknowledged only a moral commitment to making payment. The need for that is obvious to all, but it's not the same as a legal commitment and we must hope that that will follow.

It doesn't look as though that will be soon, though, nor do we know how generous Fujitsu intends to be, as apparently the UK company has made no provision in its recent accounts for the exceptional payment. Sorting out a legally-binding commitment would be a good way for Scotland's senior law officers to make up for their lacklustre performance so far.

Brian Chrystal, Edinburgh.

The Herald: Paul Patterson of FujitsuPaul Patterson of Fujitsu (Image: PA)

Dictatorship by bureaucracy

THE grotesque decision by Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board to stop treatment of patients in Argyll and Bute by a visiting specialist and then prevent them using public transport ("‘Absurd’ Glasgow transport order to Highland cancer patients", The Herald, January 22) is just one more example of the modern cult of "management".

Organisations no longer exist to serve customers, students, patients, travellers or the public, they exist to serve management.

The public must accept all decisions and keep quiet. Management has become a convenient euphemism for bureaucratic dictatorship.

Peter Dryburgh, Edinburgh.

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The joy of composting

RE the charge for uplift of garden waste being imposed by Glasgow City Council ("The great bin rebellion: could it be the start of something?", The Herald, January 22): the answer is to use a compost bin. South Lanarkshire Council provided me with one free of charge some years ago when I had a very large garden; I do not know if it still does this.

All garden waste and some food waste, tea bags, fruit peelings, egg shells and so on - but no meat as it attracts rats - can go in it and householders get free compost at the end of it. Just turn it over regularly. If all grass it will be too wet so add weeds and other plant material.

Dorothy Connor, Rutherglen.

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Healthy interest in the movies

I NOTE that NHS Grampian is teaming up with a local film company to produce films aimed at stimulating staff recruitment. The mind boggles at the range of possible titles that spring to mind. “The Silence of The Limbs” for physiotherapists perhaps? And of course there would be “Dirty Harry” for infection control.

Then there’s “The Dambusters” for Urology followed by “Gone with The Wind” for Gastro-enterology. Admin would not be forgotten with “The Longest Day” whilst Orthodontists could be wooed with “A Bridge Too Far”.

Methinks a whole new industry could be borne out of this initiative, not least in the letters columns of newspapers.

Robert Menzies, Falkirk.