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December 29, 1978 - Image 18

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1978-12-29

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

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

18 Friday, December 29, 1978

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Nicaraguan Status as Israel's Friend
May Be Jeopardized by Latin-PLO Tie

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By MELECH BEN-MOSHE

Special to
The Jewish News

The embattled Central
American nation of
Nicaragua has now become
the latest "cause celebre" of
the terrorist Palestine Lib-
eration Organization and
its split-off faction, the "Re-
jection Front."
The appearance of a
"PLO-Latin American
Connection" has a • great
significance to Israel and
her supporters which
should not be overlooked.
Nicaragua has been ruled
by the Somoza family since
the 1930s, often with an
authoritarian hand. Today,
it is the number one target
of Communist subversion in
Latin America. Nicaraguan
Marxists, Jack Anderson,
the New York Times, and
the Washington Post not
withstanding, have vowed
to impose a Cuban-styled
dictatorship on their own
country.
Known as the "Sandinis-
tas" (the Sandinista Front
for the Liberation of
Nicaragua-FSLN), this ter-
rorist movement and its
Cuban-backed predecessor,
failed miserably to incite
the people against their
government.
Only in recent months
have the FSLN gained
some psychological vic-
tories through their acts
of terrorism and guerrilla
warfare.
The FSLN, . which has al-

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ways had the backing of
Moscow and Havana, is a
"transnational terrorist"
group, that is, it has work-
ing ties to other terrorist
organizations around the
world, including the IRA,
the Basque ETA and the
PLO. In fact, many leading
members of the FSLN have
received training in PLO
camps in the Middle East
and Cuba, including Pedro
Arauz Palacios and
Eduardo Contreras as was
revealed by captured FSLN
founder Tomas Borge.
Intelligence sources have
placed FSLN representa-
tives at international ter-
rorist meetings in Belfast,
Dublin, and Lebanon where
they met with the IRA, the
Basque ETA, the American
Indian Movement, and the
Tupamaros of Uruguay.
However, the PLO has been
the common denominator in
each of these meetings _ .
The PLO and RF have
been trained by the Soviet
KGB and their Cuban coun-
terparts, the DGI, during
the past decade, a little
known facet of the Com-
munist role in promoting
international terrorism.
The PLO has main-
tained a close working re-
lationship with such
"transnational ter-
rorists" as the Japanese
Red Army (Lod Airport
massacre), the Baader-
Meinhoff Gang (a KGB-
financed group that sup-
ported the PLO during
the Munich Massacre);
and the KGB-dominated
Czech secret police, the
STB. The STB allowed 't
PLO assassination team
to kill Jewish Joint Dis-
tribution Committee
leader Charles Jordan in
Prague several years
ago.
Now the PLO and the RF
have moved into Latin
America via Cuba and the
Sandinistas. On Feb. 5,
1978, the PLO and FSLN is-
sued a "joint communique"

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in Mexico City which,ac-
cording to Radio Havana,
was to "emphasize the
bonds of solidarity which
exist between the two revo-
lutionary organizations."
The communique at-
tacked the "racist state of
Israel" for its military and
economic aid to anti-
Communist Latin Ameri-
can countries, for serving as
an enclave of North Ameri-
can "imperialism" in the
Middle East, and specifi-
cally for Israel's aid to the
government of Nicaragua.
This communique was
released at a major Mos-
cow front meeting called
the "Continental Confer-
ence of Latin America
and the Caribbean for
Peace, Sovereignty and
Economic Indepen-
dence." It was sponsored
by Moscow's interna-
tional "peace and dis-
armament" organ, the
World Peace Council, an
organization reportedly
run by the Central Com-
mittee of the Communist
Party and the KGB. The
communique was signed
by the PLO representa-
tive for Latin America,
Issam Ali, and by Jose
Benito Escobar, a
member of the Sandinista
National Board.
A few days later, on Feb.
10, the Guatemalan news-
paper La Nacion reported
that "Palestinian elements
have offered to fight at the
side of Nicaraguan guerril-
las against the Anastasio
Somoza regime." This re-
ported offer came just at the
time of internal turmoil in
Nicaragua following the as-
sassination of leftist opposi-
tion leader Dr. Pedro Joa-
quin Chamorro, which in
turn was followed by FSLN
acts of terror.
According to La Nacion, a
clandestine FSLN com-
munique stated that "just as
Somoza hired mercenaries
(Green Berets), the FSLN
guerrillas have offers from
the Palestine Liberation
Front." No other details
were available then.
On March 6, the San-
dinistas and the Marxist-
led Popular Front for the
Liberation of Palestine
(PFLP), led by Moscow-
trained Nayef Hawatmeh,
issued a similar com-
munique datelined Havana,
declaring war on "U.S. im-
perialism" as the common
enemy of both groups,
against the "racist regime of
Israel," and against "the
dictatorship of Anastasio
Somoza in Nicaragua."
All this pointed to a
new theater of operations
for the PLO and the RF
with a distinctly "Latin
American connection."
Bottled up by events in
Lebanon, the PLO has
taken to a massive- bomb-
ing campaign in Israel
and a threatened terror
campaign in the U.S. It
has also been crippled by
internal factional fight-
ing, strict anti-terrorist
measures in Europe, and
the attendant problems

of the Israel-Egypt peace
initiatives.
Thus Latin America and
the Western Hemisphere
present a new area of opera-
tions for the PLO and its
sympathizers which include
not only the Cubans and
Panamanian government,
but the Colombian Com-
munist Party and the
FSLN. Israeli and Jewish
persons, as well as physical
objects, are logical target:
for the "PLO-Latin Ameri
can Connection."
One clue to this possible
shift of PLO target areas is
the fact that Armando
Ulises Estrada, once Cas-
tro's key contact to the PLO,
is back in Havana working
with the FSLN. Another
clue is the expanding con-
tacts of the PLO in the U.S.
with radical groups.
Intelligence sources re-
port more attempts by
members of the Baader-
Meinhoff Gang and the
Japanese Red Army to enter
the U.S. and establish ties
to such terrorist groups as
the "Weathermen" and
similar groups.
Just why Nicaragua
should be a target of the
PLO is best explained in the
autobiography of
Jerusalem's mayor, Teddy
Kollek, entitled "For
Jerusalem." He revealed
that Nicaragua played a
major role in obtaining
arms for Israel during the
crucial period of its creation
in 1948. Kollek met the late
Gen. Anastasio Somoza in
Nicaragua to plead Isarel's
case.
According to Kollek,
"Somoza as well as the
foreign minister cooperated
because of their strong basic
sympathy with our cause.
Our agreement included the
understanding that
Nicaragua would vote for
Israel in the United Nations
whenever the occasion
arose, a point to which they
pledged themselves out of
genuine conviction."
Nicaragua has consis-
tently supported Israel in
the UN to this day, and was
one of a handful of states to
vote against the resolution
condemning Zionism as a
form of racism.
In fact, Nicaragua gave
the newly born country of
Israel military and eco-
nomic aid to the tune of $8
million, a lot of money for
small country to give. Tod: .
Israel is repaying that
friendship by supplying the
government of Nicaragua
with military aid, its own
weapons, despite the mis-
leading claims of Jack An-
derson that it is really U.S.
weapons being sent illeg-
ally to President Somoza's
forces.
Somoza is no saint, nor
does he claim to be, but he is
much better than the
planned Communist dic-
tatorship that the FSLN
have in mind, not to men-
tion their anti-Israel, pro-
PLO stance. Israel knows
this; the United States does
not.

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