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January 26, 1979 - Image 56

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1979-01-26

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

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

56 Friday, January 26, 1919

Detroiters Study Project Renewal Neighborhoods

?.XF .M t4

Project Renewal, the
massive plan for social re-
construction in Israel, is
"possibly the most impor-
tant program the United
Jewish Appeal has ever
undertaken," said Jane
Sherman, an officer of the
Allied Jewish Campaign's
Women's Division who was
recently appointed to the
UJA'S national coordinat-
ing committee for Project
Renewal.
Mrs. Sherman and her
husband Larry led a group
of 47 Detroiters to Israel
last month on the Detroit
Service Group Family Mis-
sion. The mission partici-
pants were able to see
first-hand a few of the dis-
tressed neighborhoods
which will be affected by
Project Renewal, a 10-year,
$1.2 billion project being
undertaken by Israel and
world Jewry to improve the
lives of 300,000 Israeli citi-
zens.'
"To understand Project
Renewal, you have to
understand something of
the history of the state of Is-
. rael," said Sherman. "From
1950 to 1960, approx-
imately 60,000 Jews a year
were brought in from North
Africa, Iraq and elsewhere.
in the Middle East. Most of
them were not provided
with a great deal more than
a place to live, and many of
those were substandard
places. Often the homes
were meant to be temporary

D. LAWRENCE SHERMAN
but ended up being perma-
nent.
"Many of these people
were left out while the
rest of the country moved
ahead. Over the years,
the money we raised
managed to help a lot of
people, but some were
left out. These 300,000
people — 45,000 families
— just didn't make it.
Now they make up 10
percent of Israel's popu-
lation. Among young
people under the age of
26, it's closer to 20 per-
cent. If we don't do some-
thing to help them now,
the problem will only
continue to grow."
"We're lucky that we're
doing this when the prob-
lem is only one generation
old," Mrs. Sherman said.
"The most important aspect
of Project Renewal is that
we're going to be providing
some very Important social

Aar
JANE SHERMAN

services.
"You can't just move
people from slums into new
apartments and pretend
you've solved the prob-
lems," she said. "That ap-
proach hasn't worked here
in the U.S. and it hasn't
worked in Israel," she said.
"What we have to do beyond
this is train these people to
function in society. We have
to raise their level of expec-
tation so that they will want
to move ahead.
Mrs. Sherman noted thkt
in the Hatikva section of Tel
Aviv, one of Project Renew-
al's first target areas, a day
care center has been started
,where parents can leave
children as young as a few
months for the entire day.
"But the mothers also
come into the center to
work and to learn," she
said. "They learn about
how to take care of their
children, about proper

nutrition, how to help the
older children with their
homework. This is the
hope for the future, the
children."
Other Project Renewal
programs will involve
paraprofessionals and so-
cial workers who have
grown up and lived in the
communities they work
with, she said.
A major difference be-
tween Project Renewal and
other UJA programs is its
emphasis on urban areas,
Mrs. Sherman said.• "For
years, most of our UJA
funds have gone to de-
velopment towns and rural
settlements," she said,
"Now for the first time we're
concentrating on distressed
areas of large cities."
Project Renewal will
focus on 160 distressed
neighborhoods throughout
Israel, from Nahariya in the
north to Eilat in the south.
The Detroiters on last
month's Family Mission
also visited a target area in
the city of Ramla.
"One of the houses we
saw had been built as a
temporary shelter in the
1950s, yet the people were
still living there," .Sher-
man said. "The walls
were made of asbestos,
and the roof was corru-
gated metal. There were
originally two rooms
and a bathroom, but they
had added another room.
When we visited, only

.

four people were living Jewish Agency programs,
there, but they'd had as Mrs. Sherman said.
many as eight at one time.
"Israel will probably
Another place, we saw take in 30,000 new immig-
was only two rooms, with rants next year," she
nine people in them.
said. "And we have to
"But despite these condi- maintain our support of
tions, the homes we saw rural and agricultural
were all clean and neat. settlements, of higher
Most of the residents don't education and Youth
want to move away. They Aliya programs. Project
want to improve their Renewal won't fulfill its
objectives if we don't
neighborhoods," she said.
keep the other programs
The mission participants alive too."
were imp-ressed by what
op-
Mrs. Sherm?„,r;
they saw, and all made spe- timistic about .14
Re-
cial giftsto Project Renewal newal's success. "It's impor-
in addition to their regular tant not only for Israel but
Campaign gifts, she said.
for Jews everywhere," she
Besides this year's em- Said. "And it's going to
phasis on Project Renewal, work. It will take a lot of
the regular Campaign must effort and a long time, but it
grow to maintain other will work."

,

Forty-seven Detroiters, including children, parti-
pated in the Detroit Service Group's second Family
Mission to Israel. The group is shown at Israel's oldest
air base at Hazor.

Power of Television and M isuse of 'Documentaries'

By ROBERT E. SEGAL

(A Seven Arts Feature) '

NEW YORK — The uses



-

of the dynamic. power of
television affecting the
Jewish community have
deepened anxiety lately for
_ those who dread any promo-
tion of American homeg-
rown Nazism along with
those who are dismayed
when Palestinian terrorists
are portrayed in any role
other than destroyers of
lives and property.
In the first instance, the
Public Broadcast System's
act of televising "The
California Reich," a 58-
minute documentary about
West Coast would-be Nazis
filmed two years ago, the
television industry. dis-
played the decency of add-
ing an opening and closing
statement effective in dous-
ing the fire. Had the film
been shown as a straight ac-
count of California kooks
imitating the methods of
Hitler's swastika-stamped
marchers trying to blow up
a storm against American
Jews, television stations
might have had a plague of
arson on their hands.
William J. McCarter,
president of WTTW in

Chicago, refused to run
"The California Reich," re-
ferring to it as "almost a re-
cruitment film." A number
of other stations, including
Detroit's WTVS (Ch. 56)
tossed the film back into the
can.

the
Fortunately,
documentary, when
shown elsewhere, car-
ried the agreed upon pro-
logue and epilogue, put-
ting the film in context
and editorializing
against the bombast,
strutting, racism, and
yammering laced
through the picture.
ABC's screening of "Ter-
ror in the Promised Land"
proved a much more explo-
sive- event. Boiling decades
of Arab struggles against
Jews in the Middle East
down to a "news close-up"
inclined to justify, if not
glorify, Arab terrorism, the
producers of this telecast
displayed alarming in-
sensitivity and were
promptly and properly ex-
coriated for their wayward7.
ness.
Dore Schary, one of
America's foremost
scriptwriters and pro-

ducers, hit the mark most
expertly in his denunciation
of ABC's program. "To refer
to the PLO cause (as the
film did) as an extension of
the Holocaust is a brutal
comparison and disgusting
in its implications„-"Schary
declared. "The Holocaust
cost the lives of six million
of our people. The only
Palestinians who have died
have been those who have
either killed or tried to kill
Israelis. There has been no
breath of genocide."
Challenging the tendency
of the documentary to por-
tray Palestinian terrorists

as examples of freedom between 1948 and 1967
fighters akin to those hon- when the West Bank and
ored for their courage and Gaza were under Arab
sacrifice in World War II, rule?" "Why distort his-
Schary made another tel- tory by claiming that the
ling point. He said he Middle East war is one
wanted the producers to between European Jews
examine in detail the claim and Palestinian Arabs?
that the PLO trains its men Why omit pre-1948
and_women to die, to prefer Arab-Jewish conflict?
suicide in their cause. "If all Why skip over Arab har-
of them are so committed, rassment and murder of
why is it that Israeli jails • Jews in Arab lands?"
are full of terrorists who
Frank Reynolds, who in-
surrendered once they were
troduced "Terror in the
attacked?" he asked.
Promised Land" for ABC

Other penetrating
questions were raised
elsewhere: "Why did not
the film point out that
there was no move to
create a Palestinian state

viewers, is not alone in his
tendency to tilt Arabward.
Nicholas von Hoffman,
widely read syndicated col-
umnist, has urged his
readers to keep up on Mid-

WASHINGTON, D.C. —
Most everybody would
probably like to browse
through the "nation's attic"
and pick out a few things for
a special exhibition. Anna
Cohn, director of Washing-
ton's Bnai Brith Museum,
had that chance. She went
"shopping"_in the back
rooms of the Smithsonian's
Museum of History and
Technology and Museum of
Natural History for Judaic
ceremonial and folk art ob-
jects now on display at the
Bnai Brith Museum.
Accompanied by a Smith-
sonian curator and staff
conservator, Cohn selected
75 of the museum's 500-odd

objects of Jewish signifi-
cance. Her favorite is a
unique 19th Century red
velvet curtain from a
synagogue in Turkey with
Hebrew lettering embroi-
dered in pure gold thread.
Many of the rare objects
have never before been on
public exhibition. The
Smithsonian's museums
are able to display only
about three percent of the
Institution's 78 million ar-
tifacts.
The exhibit of Judaica
includes manuscripts,
textiles and works of
brass, silver, gold, and
ivory. The loan exhibit
also -has several objects

dle East developments by
reading the pro-PLO Middle
East Resource Center pub-
lications. A sample of Von
Hoffman's slant in his
editorial comment that
what Israel wants is "the
pauperization and dis-
placement of the entire
population of the occupied
West Bank"
Frightening is the power
of television and the printed
word. The American public
deserves to be fully and
honestly informed; the
democratic process is
wounded severely when
those who produce televi-
sion scripts and news col-
umns let their prejudices
and ill-informed judgments
carry them away.

Smithsonian Treasures Shown
at Capital Bnai Brith Museum

DORE SCHARY

which survive - the
ree
Holocaust -,C"
ugh
spiceboxes, silver
cups, circumcision sets,
marriage contracts, H-
luminated manuscripts,
Torah ornaments and
prayer shawls.

The Smithsonian's collec-
tion of Judaica was started
in 1893 when objects were
for the Institu-
tion's display at the World's
Columbian Exposition in
Chicago. The objects were
later studied and cared for
by Immanuel Casanowicz
who spent 35 years at the
Smithsonian working with
religious artifacts.

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