Teddy Kollek's Statement:
Jerusalem Mayor's Undoctored Letter
Editors receive innumerable letters on a variety of subjects, and the most crucial
issues of our time. Letters to editors are often cut in size, but when published the writers'
views are kept intact by responsible men who handle them. But the doctoring of respon-
sible statements can not be considered ethical.
The editor of Detroit's morning newspaper authored a series of articles on the
Middle East. His statements vis-a-vis Israel were very damaging because he had gone to
most irresponsible and primarily terrorist sources for his information. His views on Jeru-
salem were, at the very outset, prejudicial. His interview with Mayor Teddy Kollek of Jeru-
salem emerged as an insufficient response due to the Detroit editor's failure to impart to the
Israeli spokesmen the claims of the former Arab mayor of Jerusalem, to enable them to re-
, spond properly.
Last Friday a portion of a letter from Jerusalem Mayor Kollek appeared in the
Detroit newspaper. Mr. Kollek's letter merited fullest use because of the damage that
had been done in the original article that was filled with so many distortions about Israel's
administration of Jerusalem. In the interest of truth about Israel's treatment of her Arab
citizens and residents we present the copy that appeared in the Free Press and the letter
from which it was culled:
Four Israeli Qualls Ask
Rights From Muslims,
Same Given by Israel
On Dec. 14, 1970, the four Qadis (chief religious leaders),
serving the Arab population in Israel and the administered
territories, sent an open letter to the Islamic.conference which
opened in Tripoli, Libya, on the 12th of that month, and
appealed to the participants to assure that the Arab countries
concerned would permit Israel's Moslems to fulfill the holy
obligation of making the pilgrimage to Mecca.
The appeal emphasizes the complete freedom Moslems
enjoy to practice their faith in Israel and points up the
paradox that, while the government of Israel permits them
to make a pilgrimage, the Arab governments prevent them
from doing so.
Consul for Press and Information
The Kollek Letter as it Appeared
Actual Text of Letter Addressed to
in the Detroit Free Press on Jan. 8
Free Press by Mayor Kollek
December 22, 197C Jerusalem's Mayor Asks Arab Cooperation
I am grateful to you for printing Mark Eth-
Mark Ethridge, Jr.
ridge's article, "Jerusalem is Stage for Mideast
Discord." Although he clarified many of the state-
ments made by Mr. Rouhi al-Khatib, former mayor
Detroit Free Press
of Jordanian Jerusalem, there were some comments
321 Lafayette Boulevard
made during his interview with him that we did not
Detroit, Michigan 48231
discuss. I would, therefore, appreciate your allowing
Dear Mr. Ethridge:
me to correct them at this time.
Over the past two and a half weeks I have
Admittedly, Mr. al-Khatib was an industrious
received over twenty letters, practically all from
administrator during his 13-year term of office. He
people I do not know but who. are familiar with and
accomplished some improvements for the municipal
care about Jerusalem, protesting your article "What
administration and for the development of the
War Means to Arab Ex-Mayor in Jerusalem." After
economy of the city.
our meeting on December 2, I was looking forward
I can well understand his feelings for Jeru-
to reading a subsequent piece. Maybe because of the
vagaries of mail during the holiday season, I have
salem but this does not give him the right to
change historical facts.
re is ample evidence
received no copy of our interview, but meanwhile
the protest letters come in each day. Consequently,
throughout the world to attest to the Israeli
army's exemplary behavior during and after the
I would like to correct some of the statements made
hostilities of 1967. It is worthwhile pointing out
by Mr. al-Khatib.
that there was no real damage to_the city and
Admittedly. Mr. al-Khatib was an industrious
that Israeli soldiers were given strict orders not
administrator and during his 13-year term of office
to shell holy places or civilian -dwellings.
as Mayor of Jordanian Jerusalem he accomplished
some improvements for the municipal administration
During the past three years, the present admin-
istration has made an extreme effort to equalize
and for the development of the economy
all municipal services throughout united Jerusalem.
I can well understand his feelings for Jerusalem
Consequently, water is available 24 hours a day
but this does not give him the right to change his-
instead of twice a week, poor garbage collection
torical facts. There is ample evidence throughout
has been replaced by modern means, and roads
the world to attest to the Israeli army's exemplary
extend to distant villages within the city limits
behavior during and after the hostilities of 1967. It is
which heretofore were completely isolated.
worthwhile pointing out that there was no real dam-
age to the city and that Israeli soldiers were given
Mr. al-Khatib's accusation about the Arab
strict orders not to shell holy places or civilian dwell-
cemetery near the Dome of the Rock is totally
ings. This measure saved religious shrines even
unfounded. Since unification, no cemetery has been
when they were occupied by the Jordanian army and
destroyed and not a single Arab tombstone removed.
at the same time cost Israeli lives because snipers
Ms. Ethridge says that Jerusalem "bothers
were in many of the buildings. All this, of course,
Mr. al-Khatib." Mr. al-Kbatib could contribute a
happened after Jordanian forces started shelling
great deal to the welfare of Jerusalem as r whole
Jewish Jerusalem hitting and damaging hospitals,
and to the Arab community in particular. Had
schools and about 1,000 apartments.
he opted for the path of cooperation instead of
"Concentration camps . . . physical and mental
resorting to unfounded accusations such as those
torture ... fate of many is still unknown" exist only
in Mr. Ethridge's article, the interests of Arab
in Mr. al-Khatib's fertile imagination. Upon the
Jerusalem and thus entire Jerusalem would have
reunification of the city of Jerusalem there was-
been better served.
evidently a place for only one united municipality.
We in this mosaic-like city are expending all
Mr. al-Khatib and his colleagues who represented 25
per cent of the total population of the united city
our efforts to create cooperation with a certain
were offered membership in the City Council and
amount of success. Mr. al-Rhatib can still join us
he himself the deputy Mayorship. A special provision
and, I may add, greatly contribute toward this
in the law of reunification provided for that. Unfor-
tunately, they all declined the offer and Mr. al-Khatib
chose the way of non-cooperation and persisted in
inciting unrest. After repeated warnings be was ex-
pelled to Amman where, as a Jordanian citizen, he
now resides. I may add that all Arabs who remained
unfounded. Since unification no cemetery has been
have the same rights as many Israeli citizens and
destroyed and not a single Arab tombstone removed.
this. includes freedom of speech. Arab newspapers in
East Jerusalem are allowed to criticize the govern-
Mr. Ethridge says that Jerusalem "bothers Mr.
al-Khatib." al-Khatib could contribute a great
ment - as they wish, and they do so freely without
ever having been closed down as they were frequent-
deal to the welfare of Jerusalem as a whole and to
ly in Jordanian times.
the Arab community in particular. Had be opted for
the path of cooperation, the way to safeguard the
During the past three years the present admin-
interests of Arab Jerusalem and thus entire Jerusa-
istration has made an extreme effort to equalize all
lem weld be better served, rather than by contin-
municipal services throughout united Jerusalem.
ually resorting to unfounded accusations such as
Consequently, water is available twenty-four hours a
those in Mr. Ethridge's article. We in Jerusalem, a
day instead of twice a week, poor garbage collection
mosaic city, are expending all our efforts to create
has been replaced by modern means and roads
cooperation with a certain amount of success. Mr.
extend to distant villages within the city limits which
al-Khatib can still join us and, I may add, greatly
heretofore were completely isolated.
contribute toward this pursuit.
As to Mr. al-Khatib's accusation about the Arab
Cemetery near the Dome of the Rock, it is totally
The Jewish News, having obtained the complete text of Mayor Kollek's letter, pre-
sents it here for a study of contrasts. Note how the Free Press editor doctored the first
paragraph. Note how he manufactured an appreciation for himself for articles that no
one who knows the truth about the Middle East could accept as an impartial report by a
Let the type of journalism we have been subjected to here be judged by the facts
The translation of the text of the open letter directed by the
Moslem Qadis of Israel to the Congress for the Propagation of Islam
that met in Tripoli, Libya, follows:
On Saturday, 12 December, a Congress of Moslem Revival was
opened in Tripoli by the ruler of Libya, Muammar el-QaddafL Delega-
from various Moslem states are participating. The purpose of
the Congress is to examine the Moslem revival, Moslem cultural rela-
tions with the peoples of the world and the strengthening of bonds of
the spirit within the Moslem world. Among other matters on the
agenda are the status of Jerusalem and the Mosque of Aqsa.
We, the Moslems of Israel, maintain our beliefs. No change has
taken place in our religions life. We enjoy full freedom ha the observ-
ance of our religious obligations, and our religious courts pass
judgment according to Moslem law. Nothing is denied us—except
permission for those of us in a position to do so to go on pilgrimage,
which is one of the fundamentals of Islam.
We regret that Moslem governments with whom we are as one in
our religions faith should prevent us from fulfilling the obligation of
making a pilgrimage to' the house of Allah, to which we direct our
prayers five times a day—and this at a time when the government
of Israel permits us to do so and puts no obstacles in our way.
The Moslem Qadis of Israel address a passionate appeal to par-
ticipants in the Congress to consider the question of the freedom of
Israel's Moslems to make the pilgrimage to Mecca.
The Moslem Qadis express the hope that success will attend the
participants for the benefit of the Moslem people, that it may make
its upright way, free of selfish emotions and of every deviation and
Sheikh Mahmnd Tewfik Asalleh, Qadi of Yafo-Jerusalem
Sheikh Husni el-Znahl, Qadi of Nazareth
Sheila' Amin Qasim Madlaj, Qadi of Acco
Sheikh Hasan Amin Habash, Qadi of the Central Region
This Week in Jewish History
(From the files of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency)
40 Years Ago This Week& 1931
Yeshiva College President Samuel Levy was elected borough
president of Manhattan.
Bnai Brith said it had 600 50-year-or-more members, the oldest
being Nathan Jacobs of California, age 104.
Jordanian leaders chose to leave Amman in near-darkness rather
than lease power from a Jewish-owned company.
Lithuania's prohibition of employment of aliens after 1931 was
seen as particularly serious for 10,000 Jewish refugees of World
Zionist leaders said America's economic depression had reduced
aid to Palestine to nearly nil.
10 Years Ago This Week: 1961
Yehezkel Sahar, Israeli ambassador to Austria and former police
inspector general, received a nine-month suspended sentence and
an $8,000 fine for lying in a libel action involving Deputy Inspector
General Amos Ben-Gurion.
Ex-Gestapo chief Francis Reimeringer was sentenced to death in
France for murdering "innumerable" French Jews and resistance
Ogden R. Reid resigned as U.S. ambassador to Israel.
A Scarsdale, N.Y. club barred the Episcopalian escort of a local
debutante because his father was Jewish. Ills mother was Catholic.
Walton Bachrach, vice mayor of Cincinnati, was elected mayor
by the city council.
Boston police took George Lincoln Rockwell into protective cus-
today after he was stoned by a crowd protesting his storm troopers'
picketing of the premiere of "Exodus."
Dr. Joachim Prinz, Zionist president of the American Jewish
Congress, declared "Zionism is dead—long live the Jewish people"
and urged a Ben-Gurion-style "new and dynamic movement to pre-
serve Jewish peoplehood and create an independent and positive link
between American Jewry and Israel."
Vice Adm. Hyman Rickover, "father" of America's first nuclear
sub, received the Navy's top peacetime award, the Distinguished
Service Medal, aboard the Nautilus.
New York honored Sol Hurok for 40 years of cultural leadership.
West Germany's Justice Ministry denied charges that Adenauer
aide Hans Globke had helped draft Nazi race laws.
Attorney General William P. Rogers scored the American Nazi
Party but said listing it as a subversive group would only give it
The Congressional Record printed Hebrew characters for the
first time in quoting a House prayer by Rabbi Arnold Turetsky of
The traditionally low U.S. Jewisolla ti
d dyhrce rate—one in 10 mar-
riages—was seen by Rabbi Bernard elbaum of the Jewish Theo-
logical Seminary as nearing the national average—one in four:
Jerneery IS, 1971