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May 16, 1980 - Image 10

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1980-05-16

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

10 Friday, May 16, 1980

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

PLO's Capucci Speaks While Congressman Drinan Is Silenced

(Continued from Page 1)

Archbishop
Hilarion
Capucci.
"Capucci, the former head
of Israel's Greek Catholic
community, was caught in
the act of smuggling arms to
the Palestine Liberation

such an eloquent and effec-
tive voice in Congress, the
least that can be hoped is
that the papal order will
also rescue the world from
the political terrorism of

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(Continued from. Page 1)
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gate for the Soviet Union,
would be allied against
American interests."

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0 :

"Capucci was in Iran this
week as the ayatollah's cho-
sen conduit to deliver to
Switzerland the bodies of
the eight Americans who
died in the attempt to rescue
the American hostages two
weeks ago. At an airport
press conference in Tehe-
ran, Capucci referred to the
rescue attempt as a "crime,"
and said its failure was "an
act of God." As he spoke, his
Iranian host reached into a
box and pulled out the char-
red remains of a human
foot.

"If Capucci were indis-
pensable to the return of the
bodies it would be inappro-
priate to criticize his role.
But there are Swiss and:Red
Cross authorities in Iran
who could arrange for the
transfer without another
middleman. Iran has
clearly picked Capucci to
help him and the PLO,
which played a key role in
Khomeini's rise to power.
Capucci's official status in
the Catholic church and his
outspoken support of Kho-
meini have conferred
legitimacy on the Iranian
revolution and the seizure
of the Americans.

Church Unit to Seek
Recognition of Israel

4

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Organization in 1974 and
convicted. He served three
years of a 12-year sentence
before Israel freed him in
response to pleas from the
Vatican. At the time the
prelate was released, Pope
Paul VI pledged, in a letter
to Israeli President Ep-
hraim Katzir, that Capuc-
ci's future activities would
not be detrimental to Israel.
Privately, the Vatican in-
terpreted this pledge to
mean that the prelate would
never again be posted to the
Middle East. Since that
pledge was made it has been
violated, at least in spirit,
four times.
"After a brief assign-
ment to Brazil, Capucci
was reassigned to Rome.
Early last year he made
his first Middle East
journey — a trip to
Damascus to attend a
meeting of the Palestine
National Council. His
close ties to the PLO have
been translated into ties
with Iran's Ayatollah
Ruhollah Khomeini, and
since the seizure of the
American hostages last
November, Capucci has
made at least three trips
to Iran.

ci

1.3

The NCC decided last
November to draft a policy
statement on the Middle
East after it rejected a reso-
lution by the Antiochian
Christian Archdiocese of
New York and All North
America accusing Israel of
violating human rights.
The Antiochian Church
group has repeatedly
sought to get the NCC to
adopt anti-Israel resolu-
tions. The NCC spokesman
said that once a policy

statement is adopted, that
will be the policy of the NCC
for the next 10 years.
In making the decision
last November to draft a
policy statement, the NCC
also voted to send a fact-
finding panel to the
Mideast. Prior to its trip,
the committee held hear-
ings in New York and
Washington which were
boycotted by Jewish organ-
izations because they con-
sidered that the NCC had
demonstrated a pro-Arab
bias. However, Jewish
groups met in late March
with the NCC's human
rights committee to discuss
the proposed policy state-
ment.

"Israel protested Capuc-
ci's early Middle East
travels, although more re-
cently it has muted its criti-
cism for fear of being viewed
as interfering in efforts on
behalf of the American hos-
tages or the return of the
bodies. The Vatican, accord-
ing to diplomatic sources,
has conceded the merit of Is-
rael's complaint and ex-
pressed disapproval of
Capucci's visits, but says it
cannot control him.
"It may be true that the
Vatican cannot physically
restrain the prelate. But
there are ways to exert con-
trol over his activities or,
failing that, to rob his ac-
tivities of the legitimacy
they give to anti-Israeli and
anti-American causes. If a
papal order can deprive the
House of Representatives of
a force for good, certainly it
should be able to deprive an

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Harassment of Soviet Jews
Continues as More Arrested

NEW YORK (JTA) —
Alarm over the most in-
tense harassment of Soviet
Jews in the past two years
was heightened last week
by the sentencing of Moisey
Tonkonogi from Odessa to
one year in prison on
charges of "parasitism" and
the arrest of Moshe Zats
from Chernovtsy, it was re-
ported by the Greater New
York Conference on Soviet
Jewry.
Zats- was charged with
unsubstantiated economic
crimes, in an investigation
begun when the construc-
tion engineer applied to
emigrate to Israel in 1979.
Tonkonogi, who was ar-
rested earlier this week,
was charged with
"parasitism" because he
had been unable to find a job
since he first applied to
emigrate in 1973.
Other Soviet Jewish
activists who have be-
come prisoners of con-

Two In a Room

evil force lik the PLO of
active support by a Catholic
archbishop.
(See Commentary,
Page 2)

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It also was learned that
Leonid Volvovsky, a 38-
year-old computer scientist
and former Moscow Hebrew
teacher, was arrested on
April 22 on charges of vag-
rancy, according to the Na-
tional Conference on Soviet
Jewry tNCSJ).

MICHIGAN CALL COLLECT: (313) 474-0500 Kat Wilcox
FLORIDA CALL COLLECT: (305)462-8600 Jack Howie

Voivovsky and his family
have been trying to emi-
grate to Israel since 1973.
He was repeatedly refused
because his research work
in computer design was con-
sidered classified.
Meanwhile, an interna-
tional human rights panel,
including former U.S. Am-
bassador to the UN Andrew
Young, called on the Soviet
Union to free dissident
Anatoly Shcharansky.

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