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August 03, 1979 - Image 17

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1979-08-03

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

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Jewish Influence Strong in U.S.
Says Squadron of. AJCongress

JERUSALEM (JTA) —
American Jewish influence
in Washington is strong and
growing because U.S. Jews
are "educated, affluent, in-
tense, cohesive and articu-
late" and — perhaps most
important — "because we
will fight for Israel's secu-
rity without regard to how
the struggle ,might affect
our own status as a minority
in America."
This view was expressed
by Howard Squadron,
president of the American
Jewish Congress, at a public
forum here on "The White
House and American Jews:
Politics and Pressures"
sponsored by the Congress
at the Van Leer Jerusalem
Foundation.
The event served as a
curtain-raiser for the organ-
ization's 15th annual
American-Israel
"Dialogue," which brought
together two dozen Ameri-
can Jewish and Israeli intel-
lectuals, rabbis and com-
munal leaders earlier this
month.
Squadron cautioned,
however, that "we win
some and we lose some"
— and "we have no as-
surance that we will pre-
vail when we challenge
the White House."
Despite this fact, how-
ever, the AJCongress leader
said, American Jews were

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still courted by the Carter
Administration "not only
for our own support but for
our influence on other
Americans." He noted that
when the White House
launched its drive to win
public support for the SALT
II treaty, Jewish organiza-
tional leaders, including
himself, had been among
the first .to be invited to
Washington to hear the
Administration's view and
to bring it to the rest of the
country.
Commenting on Ameri-
can Jewish activity in sup-
port of Israel, Squadron
said: "Israel's security —
not our own safety as a
Jewish community — is the
determining factor."
At the same time, he
added, "We would hope to be
able to advise the govern-
ment of Israel how best to
present its case. If we can do
that, we can serve Israel
most effectively and our
own country as well, for we
share the fundamental con-
viction that a secure Israel
serves America's best inter,
ests."
Simha Dinitz, Israel's
former Ambassador to
the U.S., told the forum
that while he favored
"honest and blunt
dialogue" between
American Jews and Is-
rael, "I do not believe it
should be conducted by
open letters released to
the New York Times."
Dinitz, now assistant
president of Hebrew Uni-
versity, said he agreed
neither with_ those U.S.
Jews who felt Israel should
be free of criticism because
"it's your country" nor with
those who insisted on the
right to participate in mak-
ing policy for the Jewish
state because they were
Jews.

FALL ANTIQUE FAIR

Co-ordinated by Jeanne Fishman

His own view, Dinitz said,
was to encourage free and
uninhibited criticism of Is-
raeli policies by those who
felt criticism was necessary
but that it be done "not pub-
licly through the newspap-
ers but through direct con-_
versations with Israel gov-
ernment officials.
"There is no lack of oppor-
tunity for American Jews to
make their views known
here," Dinitz said.
The public display of
American Jewish dif-
ferences on secondary
matters, Dinitz said, in an
apparent reference to the
disputepver Elon Moreh,
"serves only to make a
Jewish consensus on the
major issues — such as
the dangers of a Palesti-
nian state and the indi-
visibility of Jerusalem —
more difficult to impress
on the makers of public
policy and public opin-
ion."
A leading U.S. Jewish
scholar pleaded for a "re-
nascent Zionism" that did
not limit itself to appeals for
aliya, but that included citi-
zenship in the Jewish
people based on Jewish
ideals of righteousness and
truth.
"Zionism with aliya is not
Zionism, but Zionism with
only aliyah is irrelevant to
American Jewry," said
Jacob Neusner, prOfessor of
religion at Brown Univer-
sity. Because American
Jews took seriously not only
the survival of the state of
Israel but also their contin-
ued existence as a distinc-
tive community, Prof.
Neusner said, they rejected
aliya and ignored and dis-
regarded a Zionism that
preached only aliya to them.
Prof. Neusner called for "a
renascent Zionism which
addresses itself to the
realities of the Jewish world
and also makes its peace
with the frailties of the
Jewish people." .
"Renascent Zionism"
would include Jewish ethi-
cal teachings and the
Jewish ideals of righteous-
ness and truth, Prof.
Neusner said.

Friday, August 3, 1979

Amnesty International Seeks
Clemency for Russian Jews

NEW YORK — Amnesty
International has cabled
President Leonid Brezhnev
of the Soviet Union appeal-
ing to him to commute the
death sentences passed
against four Jews in the
Ukraine.
In early July, the Sup-
reme Court of the Ukrai-
nian Republic upheld the
death sentence passed on
Aug. 28, 1979 by the
Donetsk Regional Court
against Rafael Adjiastivili,
Elia Mikhailishvili, Gabriel
Spiashvili and a Mr. Abas-
sov. The four were among 50
people convicted of stealing
surplus textiles from a fac-
tory and selling them for a
private gain. All those sen-
tenced to death are Jews.
Meanwhile, at their San
Diego convention, the
Jewish War Veterans of the
U.S.A announced adoption
of six Soviet Jewish refus-
nicks. The six Soviet vete-
rans of World War II wrote a
letter to Leonid Brezhnev
on Sept. 11, 1978, informing
him that the OVIR (visa
office) had denied them

National Front
Loses Voters

LONDON (JTA) — A
major split in the leadership
of the neo-Nazi National
Front has been triggered by
the Front's weak showing in
the recent general election,
in which its vote dropped by
over half— from 2.9 percent
to 1.3 percent.
The election_ defeat has
sparked a row between John
Tyndall, the party leader
and Martin Webster, its ac-
tivities organizer, who ac-
cording to press reports, has
been "suspended" from
duty.
Despite the Front's re-
verses, Jewish leaders warn
that it is still a dangerous
threat.

visas, althodgh they are ill
and have realtives pre-
sently residing in Israel.
The six veterans have
applied for visas both indi-
vidually and collectively.
Twenty-eight Ameri-
can computer scientists
have also cabled
Brezhnev, urging him to
secure the release from
prison of theit young
Soviet colleague Anatoly
Shcharansky.
The appeal was based on
information received by
Shcharansky's mother in
the Soviet Union that her
son's health has been deter-
iorating rapidly and that
proper mediCal care was not
available to him in prison.
At the same time, the
New York Regional Board
of the Anti-Defamation
League of Bnai Brith has
adopted as honorary mem-
bers the imprisoned Soviet
Jew, Vladimir Slepak, and
his wife, Marya.

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Congress Acts on
Home Guarantees
for Israel, Egypt

WASHINGTON (JTA) —
A Senate-House Conference
Committee has accepted a
proposal by Sen. Jacob
Javits (R-N.Y.) that would
provide $25 million in hous-
ing guarantees for Israel.
The proposal also provides
$25 million in guarantees
for housing to Egypt.
The conference report
containing Javits' proposal
has been sent back to the
Senate and House for ap-
proval in both chambers.
The Javits proposal, an
amendment to the Interna-
tional Development Assis-
tance Act of 1979, would
permit Israeli banks to bor-
row up to $25 million in the
U.S. for the purpose of pro-
viding housing to lower in-
come families in Israel.

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Out of town calls accepted. Open Mon. & Thurs. til 9 p.m.

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