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June 19, 1981 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1981-06-19

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2 Friday, June



Purely Commentary

Severe Lessons of the Spectacular Military Act That
Begins to Enlighten the Open-Minded About Advantages
of Challenging Those Who Want the Atom for Holocaust

By Philip

Safire's 'Hail to the Nuclear Entebbe' . . . Out of Much That
May Yet Emerge: The Benefits That Emphasize Justice

Once again, there is admiration for Israel's defensive skills. Was it more jealousy
than simple reasoning that caused the vicious attacks on the Jewish state after the
successful bombing of the nuclear reactor in Iraq on June 7?
William Safire did not buckle under when Israel's enemies ganged up to attack the
Israelis. "Hail to the Nuclear Entebbe," the title of his essay in the June 11 New York
Times, speaks volumes. It also throws out the gauntlet to the enemies of Israel who have
played a bad game in reaction to the "Nuclear Entebbe."
Safire commenced his essay by stating:
Israel has done the world two enormous favors: it has denied an aggres-
sive dictator the ability to inflict atomic terror, and it has enabled the rest of
the world to indulge in an orgy of hypocrisy.
Iraq has long been proud of the fact of its "state of war" with Israel; it is
one Arab nation that has repeatedly rejected any armistice sought by Israel
with neighbors.
In addition, oil-rich Iraq — which needs no atomic power for peaceful
purposes — has been planning to use its French-purchased nuclear equip-
ment to produce atomic bombs, a fact known to French and U.S. intelli-
gence. When Iran vainly tried to bomb that reactor after Iraq's invasion,
Baghdad's official newspaper made no secret of the ultimate target, assert-
ing that the nuclear facility "is not intended to be used against Iran but
against the Zionist enemy."
With its survival thus directly threatened, Israel had the legal right and
moral obligation to deny Iraq's dictator the capacity to bring about instant
holocaust. Against a neighbor that had recently proved its willingness to
commit aggression, Israel used its planes for the precise purpose for which
they were purchased: self-defense.
Such defense need not await a devastating offense. If warlike Cuba
were to acquire atomic weapons and the means of delivering them, the
President of the U.S. would have the same right and obligation to obliterate
that destabilizing nuclear threat.
But some of our apoplectic editorialists ask: if Israel's nuclear non-
proliferation strike is right and proper, then would it not be equally moral
for an aggressor to attack suspected nuclear weapons in Israel?
The answer is no: Israel, its people so often threatened with extermina-
tion, is not threatening to incinerate the Arab world. No nation has cause to
fear an atomic attack from Israel any more than one from the United States.
Weaponry whose purpose is to deter is not weaponry whose purpose is to
terrorize; there is a huge moral difference.
The removal of the threat of atomic blackmail has caused the world to
heave a sigh of relief that comes whooshing out in the furious condemnation
of the nation that solved the world's dilemma. Never in diplomatic history
have so many nations been able to issue statements so directly contrary to
what their leaders really believe.
This simple statement should enlighten even the biased. There is more to this
essay. There is the revelation that the pro-Arab element in the State and Defense

Mitterrand's Position on Israel:
A Friendship Confirmed, With
a Pro-Palestinian Tinge

The concerns expressed over the attitude of recently-
elected president of France, Francois Mitterrand, is pro-
vided with a measure of clarification in an interview con-
ducted with him, in Paris last week, by James Reston, who
could well be described as the chief columnist of the New
York Times.
In the first interview Mitterrand gave as the newly-
elected president of France, to Reston, there is a lengthy
explanation. The Reston question and the Mitterrand re-
ply, included in the NYTimes published excerpts of the
interview, are:
Q. From my reading of what you have said in the
past about the Israeli-Arab conflict you seem to
have taken a more sympathetic position toward
Israel, and yet, as I understand what you have
also said, you-do favor a Palestinian state in east
Jordan. Can those two ideas be reconciled?
A. I have constantly expressed the same posi-
tion at all times.
In Algiers, alongside President Boumediene,
speaking live on television, I said to the Algerians
that nothing would be possible before they recog-
nized Israel's right to exist. I said the same thing in
Cairo, to Sadat, long before the peace treaty. And
I have always told my friends in Jerusalem and
Tel Aviv that they should recognize that the
Palestinians should have a homeland. I am a
friend of Israel, and I shall do nothing to endanger
Israel's existence nor the means to exist, but I do
not think that it is realistic to pretend that the
Palestinian problem does not exist.
I know what their objection is: they say that
they do not want an additional state in the Middle
East. They would be prepared to envisage a
Jordan-Palestinian solution like before the Six-
Day War when the West Bank was called Trans-
jordan. I am not telling them what they should do,
because I am in favor of bilateral negotiations
between opponents. I am simply saying that it is
normal that the Palestinians should have a home-
land where they will build, as they please, the
structures of a state. I remain the friend of the
Israeli leaders because I have always been very


Departments are still active, that every opportunity will be utilized to harm Israel, that a
destructive program has been planned to undermine Israel's security.
Safire lists some of the "punishments" that were planned and he also indicates that
they are rejected by Richard Allen and Alexander Haig. This is very heartening. It
provides hope that the Administration of Ronald Reagan will not abandon pledges of
support for Israel.
The Safire essay does even more: it shows how the "Nuclear Entebbe" provi
comfort for the Arab states, for Saudi Arabia and Egypt, that they will not, in
become targets of the nuclear threats from their irrational coreligionists.
It will take time, but Entebbe will once again inspire not only admiration for the
Israeli armed forces but for its intelligence as well, and for that nation's will to live and
insistence upon it.
The Wall Street Journal on June 10 editorially complimented Israel on its sensa-
tional destruction of the Iraqi nuclear reactor. The editorial "Mourning the Bomb" was
written two days preceding the U.S. suspension of jet shipments to Israel. This lends even
greater power to the Wall Street Journal editorial, some hot lines from which are:
What is going on here: Iraq, awash in cheap crude oil, wants a big
nuclear reactor. It rebuffs French suggestions to give up the original design
and substitute one that does not need weapons-grade uranium. It has been
buying raw uranium, which is not suitable for use in reactors, but dandy if
you want to use the reactor to breed plutonium for weapons. Faced with
this evidence, the conclusion of world opinion has been — everything's OK,
Iraq has signed the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.
This kind of silliness has a mysterious power to blind most who man
foreign ministries, think tanks and editorial sanctums. Of course Iraq was
building a bomb. Of course its intended target was Israel. Of course, given
- the Iraqi reputation for political nuttiness reaffirmed again in its starting a
war with Iran, its atom bomb would also have been a danger to all its
neighbors. We all ought to get together and send the Israelis a vote of thanks
• • •
The Israelis are not infallible, but their security for 33 years now has
depended on making careful power judgments. They know that their best
chances for avoiding bloodshed lie in frequently reminding their neighbors
that they are strong and that their wishes are not to be taken lightly.
The Israeli approach to non-proliferation is limited and direct. But
their outlook on the world and on what it takes to earn the world's respect
offers a few lessons we ourselves could profitably learn.
Now the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee sits in judgment over Israel's
lesson to an enemy that a threat to her life will not be tolerated.
How will the U.S. Senators react to "Mourning the Bomb" and "Hail to Nuclear
Entebbe?" Or, must they wait for the proof Menahem Begin and also Shimon Peres can
provide them that Israel was a target for destruction by a state whose ideologies were
never to the liking of democratic forces and of most Arab states?
Perhaps Dr. Henry Kissinger can convince them to start shipping jets again to Israel.
He has already predicted the suspension won't last long.

frank with them and they know that I would not
pursue policies which would harm them.
I was the only political leader in France at the
head of a major political party to have come out
publicly in support of the Camp David agree-
This declaration adds to Israel's burdens with the re-
sponsibility of convincing friends like Mitterrand that
there already is a Palestinian state, that those who are
considered abandoned as refugees are people who have
been placed at the mercy of the Arab states with motives of
perpetuating hatreds by means of retaining those who have
left Israel during the rebirth of her statehood and their
offspring in camps of their own making.
The Palestinians in Jordan are firmly established as
citizens of an Arab country. Tens of thousands of others
could have been rehabilitated, and in the early years of
Isarel's statehood many could have returned to their former
homes if they had not been either detained by their
coreligionists or advised to stay in the camps as objects of
welfare, primarily funded by the United States.
This, however, is beside the point advanced by Mitter-
rand and the great debate that has developed over so-called
Palestinianism. The matter is now under discussion as an
aspect of continuing the Camp David decisions and the
elaboration upon them. The rights offered by Israel to the
Samaria and Judea residents could, as they should, lead to
amicability in reaching a lasting accord between Arabs and
Israelis. It is the apparent destructive elements in the dis-
pute that hinder decisions.
Perhaps the friendly Mitterrand will prove to be a
constructive participant in the discussions. He has not spo-
ken with either anger or bitterness. There is a changed
atmosphere in official France relating to Israel. The Mit-
terrand statement could prove one of the most serious chal-
lenges to Israel. Constructively, the attitude now on the
revised French record must be viewed as leading towards
peaceful relations rather than away from them.

Maccabia Is the Glorious Title
of Games in Israel Denoting
Need for Muscular in Jewry

Two weeks of sports events in Israel, commencing on
July 6, will have significance far greater than anything
related to the athletic in the normal ranks of any people.
The games, which will attract participants from many
lands throughout the world, numbering close to 4,000

athletes in all sports categories, are part of the return of the
Jewish people to normalcy.
When Dr. Max Nordau, the illustrious Zionist leader,
advocated aspiration by the Jewish youth throughout the
world to a muscular Judaism, he was especially con-
cerned about the need for self-defense, for self-protection, in
an age when Jews were being attacked mercilessly, when it
was a kind of sport in some East European countries to
pluck the beards of Jews, when Jews were considered
pariahs and helpless. Therefore the great Zionist leader,
the first man chosen by Dr. Theodor Herzl to define Zionist
aspirations at the first World Zionist Congress sessions,
urged that Jews flex their muscles and defend themselves.
Now it is different in this sense: that instead of sports
and athletics being the means for self-defense, they are the
expressions of a people's pride that the youth are the equals
of other nations and are able to display proudly their ath-
letic abilities.
Perhaps the Maccabia Games are also to be judged
among the great revivals of Zionism. The Zionist ideal
aimed at the rebirth of statehood and achieved it In the
process there was a striving for the revival of a language
that was considered alive only for prayers: Hebrew was
redeemed to become a living tongue. Jews returned to ag-
ricultural pursuits and Zionism spelled a return to the soil
in a creative fashion. The sportsmanship in the Maccabia
Games is part of the Redemption. It signalizes the empl-
on physical well-being of the Israelis and of Jewish 3 J a
everywhere. .
Therefore the rejoicing in Israel during the Maccabia
Games and the messages of cheer to the thousands of par-
ticipants from world Jewry.

Harold Saunders Again ...
and a Bad Mark for Carter

Harold Saunders, an assistant secretary of state in the
Carter Administration, repeated his unfriendly attitude to
Israel in a comment on the current situation.
In the course of his criticisms, he revealed that
President Jimmy Carter, in 1979, threatened to slow the
flow of arms to Israel in response to Israel's raids on ter-
rorist bases in Lebanon.
Thus, not only Saunders reaffirms his antagonism to
Israel but he links it with a far-from-complimentary recol-
lection about the former President. Once again, the judging
of Carter is on the debit side.

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