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April 24, 1981 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1981-04-24

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


16 Friday, April 24, 1981

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Begin Seeks to Halt Fighting at Lebanon Border

and Defense Minister
Menahem Begin moved de-
terminedly midweek to curb
escalating fighting on Is-
rael's northern border.
Begin gave orders to the
army to do all it could to re-
store quiet to the border

area, and there were broad
public hints that the Pre-
mier is putting pressure on
Major Saad Haddad's Chris-
tian militias in the south
Lebanese enclaves to reduce
the level of their (mainly ar-
tillery) activity.
Deputy Premier Yigael

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Yadin was reported by Is-
rael Radio Wednesday as
warning that "various fac-
tors on the ground — includ-
ing some Israeli elements"
might drag Israel into a
much deeper and broader
involvement in Lebanon
than the government in-
tends. Yadin was said to
have uttered this warning
several times in recent days
in top-level ministerial con-
By "Israeli elements"
Yadin seemed to be refer-
ring to some senior IDF offi-
cers who are known to be
pushing for larger and more
direct Israeli involvement.
By "various factors"
Yadin was plainly refer-
ring to Haddad's forces.


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The major himself is still
recuperating in a Haifa
hospital from an attack of
exhaustion that felled him
earlier in the week. His
guns were a good deal less
active Tuesday night than
they had been in previous
days. Israeli artillery also
was markedly quiet: there
was no response, for in-
stance, to a salvo of Kat-
Yusha rockets that landed
in agricultural area in
northern Galilee before
Inhabitants of the border
region settlements were
urged, nevertheless, to
spend the night in air raid
shelters Tuesday, though
Wednesday morning life
was reported proceeding
normally in the area.
Yadin was reported by Is-
rael Radio to have noted
particularly that Haddad's
shelling this week of Sidon
and Tyre, which caused civi-
lian deaths and casualties,
had been carried out with
shells "supplied with the
IDF." The deputy premier
urged that the militia
leader be "restrained."
On Tuesday, Premier
Begin himself pledged to
the UNIFIL commander,
Irish General Callaghan,
that Israel would indeed
exert what influence it
could upon Haddad with
a view to reducing vio-
lence and tension in the
The premier also under-
stood that the IDF would do
all in its power to cooperate
with UNIFIL and to avoid
tensions and unpleasant in-
cidents that have occurred
in the recent past between
the Israel army and the
polyglot UN force.
UNIFIL for its part an-
nounced that its men had
detected Tuesday night a
group of PLO terrorists set-
ting up Katyusha rocket
launchers with the aim to
shell Israel — and had
opened fire on them and
thereby prevented the at-

lion of the ongoing mas-
sacre of the Christians of
Lebanon by the Syrian
army of occupation and
the terrorist PLO."
Meanwhile, Israel Air
Force planes attacked ter-
rorist bases on the Lebanese
coast north of Tyre last
week and all aircraft re-
turned safetly to their
bases, a military spokes-
man announced. The
spokesman said the latest
raid was in line with Israel's
policy of striking terrori- 4--
bases in Lebanon to prey,
attacks on Israel from being
mounted at these bases.
It also was learned that
two terrorists attempting to
infiltrate Israel on a hot air
balloon were killed by Is-
raeli troops.
In a related development,
an Israeli army major was
killed and a U.S. diplomat
injured Monday as Israeli
fighters pounded Palesti-
nian positions and
Lebanese Christian and Sy-
rian gunners traded artil-
lery fire in Beirut. -
U.S. Embassy Vice
Consul Steve Patterson
was injured in the
crossfire, but not criti-
cally, an embassy
spokesman said. .
In Paris, FranCe reas-
serted its determination to
try to strengthen the official
Lebanese army in order to
obtain a lasting cease-fire in
that war-torn country.
France has felt a tradi-
tional responsibility for
Lebanon which, until the
end of World War II, was a
French protectorate and
where French is still the
main language. French
hospitals, schools and corn-
mercial firms operate
throughout Lebanon and
French public opinion looks
upon the country as having
"a special organic relation-
ship" with metropolitan

In a related develop-
ment, Yehuda Blum, Is-
rael's Ambassador to the
United Nations, declared
that Israel welcomes
"any initiative that would
bring about the termina-

rael had a guarded reaction
to reports that President
Reagan sent a personal
cable to President Hafez
Assad of Syria hailing the
role Damascus could play in
achieving peace in the Mid-
dle East.
The Reagan message was
disclosed in Beirut by Be-
shir Gemayel, commander
of the rightwing Christian
Phalangists, who accused
the U.S. of giving its
blessings to the partitior 'n
Lebanon. The Phalang
have been battling Syrian
forces in Lebanon in recent
Observers here said it ap-
peared to be an attempt by
the U.S. to balance the
sharp criticism of Syria by
Secretary of State Alexan-
der Haig when he was in
Jerusalem 10 days ago. At
that time, Haig denounced
the Syrian shelling of the
Christian town of Zahle in
central Lebanon as


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Reagan Cable
to Syria Seen
to Irk Israelis

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