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August 26, 1977 - Image 14

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1977-08-26

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

14 Friday, August 26, 1977

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

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Rabbis Assured Law of Return Change Won't Pass Knesset

JERUSALEM (JTA)—

Four American Conserva-
tive and Reform rabbinical
leaders were assured by
two leaders of the Liberal
Party, Finance Minister
Simha Ehrlich and Jewish
Agency treasurer Leon Dul-
zin, that an amendment to
the Law of Return which
would nullify non-Orthodox
conversions had little
chance of being adopted in
the Knesset.
Ehrlich told the rabbinic-
al leaders that his party,
which together with Herut
comprise the major com-
ponents of Likud, would
allow its Knesset represen-
tatives to vote their con-
science on the issue. He
added that since most of
the Liberal Party Knesse-
ters would vote against
such an amendment, it was
unlikely "to pass.
The four rabbis—Stanley
Rabinowitz, president of the
(Conservative) Rabbinical
Assembly; Rabbi Wolfe Kel-
man, RA executive vice-
president; Rabbi Ely PH :
chik, president of the (Re-
form) Central Conference
of American Rabbis; and
Joseph Glaser, CCAR execu-
tive vicepresident—were

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JEWISH NATIONAL FUND

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part of a delegation which
met in New York with Pre-
mier Menahem Begin dur-
ing the premier's visit to
the U.S. last month to dis-
cuss Begin's pledge to the
National Religious Party
and the Agudath Israel bloc
that he would introduce an
amendment which would
change the Law of Return
to require conversions "ac-
cording to Halakha."-
Shimon Peres, now the
leader of the opposition
Labor-Alignment, told the
four rabbis his party would
vigorously oppose an
amendment to the Law of
Return, asserting it would
"amount to a split in the
Jewish people." .
Meanwhile, a proposal
that Orthodox, Conservative
and Reforn'i rabbis - in the
United States set up a joint

beit din, a religious court,
to solve the controversy
over conversions has been
suggested to the four
rabbis.
Rabbi Richard G. Hirsch,
head of the World Union for
Progressive Judaism, who
lives in Jerusalem, told a
press conference that Pre-
mier Begin was ' among
those who suggested the
beit din.
But a spokesman for the
premier reused to confirm
this, saying only that a num-
ber of ideas were dis,-
cussed. The spokesman,
however; confirmed that
Begin urged the various reli-
gious bodies involved to
reach an agreement over
the question. The premier
has promised Likud's two
religious coalition partners,
the National Religious

Party and the Agudat Is-
rael bloc, to amend the
Law of Return to require
conversions only according
to Halakha.
The purpose of the beit
din would be to offer "an in-
ternationally
recognized
Jewish visa to those who
were not born Jews," ac-
cording to Rabbi Kelman.
He said the non-Orthodox
rabbis welcomed the idea
on the "stipulation that no
rabbi would be excluded as
long as he accepts the prin-
ciples of the agreement.
reached between the par-
ties concerned."
However, leaders of Agu-
dat Israel have already
voiced their opposition to
creation of such a beit din,
threatening to leave the gov-
ernment coalition if the
idea were to materialize.

Shorter Work Week Issue
May Be Cause of Rift in Israel

TEL AVIV (JTA)—While
Israeli manufacturers are
engaged in a major effort
to increase productivity by
trying to convince workers
to put in more hours, an
agreement signed only two
days before the general
election last May is now the
subject of serious friction
between the Histadrut and
the manufacturers and the
government may be called
in to decide if the agree-
ment is valid. --
The agreement calls for a
five-day work week for
some 14,000 employees of
the Maglo industrial corn-
bine of the Israeli aircraft
industry. According to Avra-
ham Shavit, president of
the Manufacturers Associ-
ation, the pact was signed
May 15 and approved by
the then Labor government
in what he termed _ was a
bribe to the workers to vote
for the Labor. Alignment
slate.
Shavit, who now -.Wants
the Likud-led government
reconsidey the agree-
ment, said it was an un-
precedented and scandalous
mOv,e to sign such an agree-
ment, especially in such a
large enterprise, and warn-
ed that it may pave the
way for other workers jig,'
small workshops and facto-
ries to dethand a five-day
work week.
The head of Histadrut's
trade union department,
Uriel Abrahamovitz, de-
nounced Shavit• and said
that the agreement would
not be nullified, that Hista-
drut would mobilize its
forces to prevent any tam-
pering with it. .
He said the agreement
was no secret. The an-
nouncement of it was re-
leased to the press but in
the hectic post-election de-
velopments in which the
country was swept up in the
unexpected results, the
news media apparently ne-
glected to carry that re-
lease.
Abrahamovitz
claimed
that a shorter work week
can enhance and stimulate
productivity. Given one free-.

Right In Your
Own Driveway!

day for shopping and attend-
ing to private affairs, ab-
senteeism could be reduced
significantly, he observed.
He also noted that there
are several factories which
are currently operating, on
a five-day work week.
Labor circles said the gov-
ernment will have to re-ap-
prove the agreement or
risk serious trouble be-
tween the Histadrut and the
government and between
the Histadrut and the Manu-
facturers Association.

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.JERUSALEM (JTA)—
Aliza Begin. wife of Pre-
mier Menahem Begin. is
well again after a bout of
pneumonia and she will ac-
company her husband on
his official visit to Ro-
mania.

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