April 13, 2007

Fundraiser Did Well By Miami Foundation

I would like to set the record straight with respect to Stephen Herbits and Herb Juli, and their participation in the gay and lesbian community in Miami (“Backroom Battler for Rumsfeld and Bronfman Finds Himself Centerstage in High-stakes Struggle,” March 30). As a longtime community activist and original counsel to the Dade Human Rights Foundation, it seems clear that innuendo and bias were clearly more important to the Forward than balance or accuracy.

As regards Herbits, it may well be that his actions cause ruffled feathers. But it is unfortunate and misleading that only Herbits’s detractors were quoted in the article, and not others, such as myself, who know his efforts to have been beneficial and productive.

But it is with respect to Juli that the article is most offensive. He was the first development director the foundation hired, and in effect had to hit the ground running to prove his worth. He more than did so, significantly increasing gifts made to the foundation.

The snide comment that “there were no allegations that [the foundation’s subsequent bankruptcy] was due to Juli’s work” was obviously true, but loaded with innuendo. Of course there were no allegations — there couldn’t be. The statement glosses over the fact that the bankruptcy occurred two years after Juli left the foundation, and was universally attributed to mismanagement by an executive director for whom Juli never worked.

Greece Should Own Up To Its Shoah Past

Opinion writer Andrew Apostolou has got it exactly right in pointing out Greek complicity in the Holocaust (“Greece Must Acknowledge Its Complicity in the Shoah,” March 23). While other nations in Europe have acknowledged and regretted their role in the Nazi horror, Greece remains strangely silent.

Indeed, Greece has portrayed Greek Jews killed by the Nazis as Greek, rather than Jewish, victims. It is similar to the Soviets forgetting during the Cold War that the Russians massacred at Babi Yar were Jews — which is why they were killed — and not simply Russians. My family traces its past back many generations in Salonika. If it were not for the early 20th-century migration of my father and his family and others to America, there would be no one left to extol the memory and virtues of the Sephardic Jews of Greece.

Covering Socialism And Chin Dimples

What a pleasure it was to read your 110th anniversary issue (April 6). Given that I have been a subscriber to your paper for only a few years, I was not fully aware of your history, and it was very enlightening to read about your coverage of so many important historical events and movements.

The issue was entertaining as well as informative. Who would have thought that I could learn about socialism and the labor movement on one page, and the ominous meaning of having a dimple in one’s chin on another?

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April 13, 2007

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