In the aftermath of the incident in Ukraine, a rocket fired from Gaza landed approximately a mile from Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport, prompting the FAA to issue a temporary advisory that U.S. airlines avoid the destination.
Statistically speaking, the risk of a random rocket striking the terminal or an aircraft or injuring passengers at Tel Aviv's airport is relatively low, but it's not a risk that everybody wants to take, and that includes commercial airlines.
It may be that the Malaysian Flight 17 disaster prompted the FAA to respond to the rocket attack in Israel more swiftly and aggressively than it otherwise would have, but we think its notice to U.S. airlines was a defensible precaution.
That didn't stop former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg from flying to Israel last week on El Al to protest the FAA action and to "show support for Israel's right to defend itself."
We don't question Israel's right to defend itself, but neither do we question the right of travelers or travel companies to make their own determinations about where they feel safe.
Israel may be "open for business," as its tourism officials proclaim, but that doesn't mean discretionary travelers have any obligation to go there when bombs are falling.
We have long believed that tourism promotes peace, but history has also shown that it works both ways.