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February 12, 1982 - Image 6

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1982-02-12

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Friday, February 12, 1982


U.S. Report Critical of Israel's Treatment of Arabs

t, My Mother
always taught
me to . . .

(Continued from Page 1)
tee, is drafted by Abrams'
office. Abrams said that he
tried to "tell the truth"
about both friends and an-
tagonists of the United
States. He said that the U.S.
first tried to get countries to
correct abuses through
quiet diplomacy, and only if
that fails to get results does
it seek to use public pres-
Abrams said the number
of pages devoted to a coun-
try in the report has nothing
to do with the extent of
human rights violations in
that country. He said it is
more an indication of the
complexity of the problem
in the particular country
and the interest in that

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country by Americans. Is-
rael has 18 pages devoted to
it while the Soviet Union
has 13, and most Arab coun-
tries eight or less.
The report on Israel notes
that the human rights situ-
ation there "was virtually
unchanged in 1981 from
previous years." The report
states: "From its inception
in 1948 the state of Israel
found itself in a continuing
state of war with most of its
Arab neighbors, owing to
the refusal of the latter to
accept its existence and to
agree to live in peace with
"Israel, has been sub-
jetted to an increasing
number of terrorist at-
tacks, including bomb-
ings and other forms of
violence, including for a
brief time this year's roc-
ket assaults on northern
Israeli towns.
"The absence of peace
treaties between Israel
and its Arab neighbors
(with the notable excep-
tion of Egypt) makes se-
curity a dominant con-
cern and affects many
factors of Israel's na-
tional rights. Israel is a
parliamentary democ-
racy which guarantees
by law the civil and polit-
ical rights of its citizens."
* * *

West Bank

The report finds little to
criticize about human
rights in Israel although it
notes the Arab minority
feels "powerless and largely
alienated." But on the West
Bank, the report finds that
"the complex human rights
situation in the occupied
territories particularly in
the West Bank and Gaza,
where almost all of the set-
tled Arab population is lo-
cated, is largely a result of
the tensions which exist be-
tween the occupying
authorities and the indig-
enous population.
"Arab fears of creeping
annexation heightened by

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the December Knesset de-
cree by which Israeli laws
are to be applied to the
Golan Heights as if that
area were a part of Israel
combined with the' cumula-
tive abrasion of 141/2 years of
military occupation to pro-
duce continued unrest.
"Restrictions on Arabs to
building homes, establish-
ing businesses, installing
generators, or drilling wells
together with the continued
establishment of new Israel
settlements and the con-
tinuing taking of Arab land
— approximately one-third
of the West Bank is Israeli
controlled — continued to
spread widespread Arab ac-
cusations that the long-
term intention of the
authorities was a gradual
squeezing out of the Arab
However, the report
notes that Israel has
stressed that it does not
use torture against pris-
oners and anyone who
violates this law is
punished. The report
says that conditions in
prisons housing Palesti-
nian prisoners continue
to be a problem and that
in 1981 there was no im-
provement in the over-
crowded conditions.
As of Sept. 1, 1981, there
were '2,448 non-Israeli
Arabs in prison for security
offenses. Of this number,
only four were under ad-
ministrative detention.
The report said that Is-
rael has protected Moslem
and Christian holy places
and has assured freedom of
access to them. West Bank
and Gaza residents are free
to travel abroad and return.
* * *

Report on Jews
in Other Countries

The condition of Jews in
other countries are also
commented on in the report,
in the Soviet Union, the re-
port claims there are some
10,000 persons in prison,
internal exile, or forced

labor for being dissenters,
including Jewish activists.
The report notes that
Jewish emigration dropped
in 1981 to 9,459 as corn-
pared to 21,471 in 1980.
Soviet anti-Semitism is
also commented upon.
"There have been numerous
reports of discrimination
against Jews by denial of
access to higher education
and the professions," the
State Department docu-
ment says. "Occasional at-
tacks on Zionism in the
media appear intended to
arouse anti-Semitic feelings
among the Soviet popula-
tion at large. During 1981,
authorities widened a cam-
paign against Hebrew cul-
tural seminars and lan-
guage classes, prosecuting
organizers under criminal
articles carrying harsh
In Iran, the report noted
that "the regime's increas-
ingly harsh attacks on Is-
rael and Zionism increase
feelings of insecurity within
Iran's Jewish community.
Some Jews in Iran have
been charged with
`Zionism,' a crime punisha-
ble by death. Since the revo-
lution, at least 10 Jews have
been executed by the Kho-
meini regime on charges
ranging from spying for the
U.S. and Israel, Zionism,
`corruption on earth' and
`warring against God.'
Large numbers of Jews
have fled Iran and among
those that remain, insecu-
rity was intensified in 1981
by the arrest of several
Jews, including a rabbi ac-
cused of helping Jews flee
The report notes that in
Argentina, "the govern-
ment maintains correct
relations with the Jewish
community, and there is
no evidence of an official
policy of anti-Semitism
although incidents of
anti-Semitism occur.
"During the height of the
`dirty war' against ter-

rorism there were crediblc= ,
reports of anti-Semitic be-
havior and persecution 6?..)
Jewish prisoners in the se-
curity forces. Virulen0
anti-Semitic literature re-
mains on sale in the country
but there have been no c_
anti-Semitic programs on
the state controlled televi ;
sion. In December 1981, the
historical drama, `Th ,,,t,
Holocaust' the showing of
which had been delayed ear-
lier, was broadcast on tele-

Situation in
Syria, Ethiopia

In Syria where some
4,000 Jews still live, the re-
port notes that emigration J,
is discouraged by the gov-
ernment for all citizens. "In
recent years, exceptions tc , J
the ban on "Jewish emigra-
tion have been made in
case of some unmarried
women," the report says.
The report also notes that ci
the Jews and other religious
minorities- "continue ti
practice their faith without I
government interferenc-,:,_
and to participate in the
economic, business and
governmental life of the
The State Department
document notes that there'll
have been reports on the
mistreatment of Falasha
Jews in Ethiopia. "Al-
though their general situa-
tion has improved by the re-
suit of the 1974 resolution,
there have been reports that
their treatment by the
regional administration of:-
Gondar (where most
Falashas live) was unusu ,
ally hard during the latter
part of 1981.
"The Administration ,
closed a private aid program
operating in this region._
which had benefited
Falasha communities.
non-Falasha population of
Gondar also seems to be suf-
fering from the administra-
tion's increased security."


Jewish Publication Society Prints
Art from Concentration Camps

"Spiritual Resistance:
Art from Concentration
Camps, 1940-1945" (Jewish
Publication Society of
America) offers the work of
artists once imprisoned at
Auschwitz, Theresienstadt,
Drancy, Bergen-Belsen and
other places in the dreadful
The paintings, watercol-
ers, and prints — 85 black
and white reproductions
and 26 color plates
— were rescued by members
of Kibutz Lohamei
Haghetaot (Ghetto Fight-
ers' Kibutz) in Israel, where
they are housed in the
Ghetto Fighters' Museum.
The memorable and mov-
ing assemblage is produced
in a manner appropriate to
the subject. It constitutes
both a memorial and an af-
firmation; it bespeaks not
horror, but deep faith and
commitment to the future.
This collection offers a
poignant glimpse into a

special world, a world
that must haunt the con-
sciousness of all Jewish
generations to come —
the landscape of the
Holocaust. Here the
depth of loss, six million
lives crushed under the
Nazi boot, becomes vivid
through pictures that
were miraculously saved
from the burning hells of
deportation centers and
concentration camps —
brands plucked from the
It is an art that surpasses
categorization, for its
creators deified Nazi regu-
lations, even wringing dyes
from tattered garments.
Many of the artists
perished, but their work
survives as testimony to
strength, faith and creative
In addition to the many
reproductions, the volume
also includes biographies of
the artists and three intro-

ductory essays that define
and explore the phenom-
enon of Holocaust art.
Tom Freudenheim, direc-G
for of the museum program ,
of the National Endowment
for the Arts, and former di-
rector of the Baltimore Art
Museum, discusses the ar-
tistic aspects of the work.
Lucy Dawidowicz,
prominent historian and j
author of "The War Again
the Jews," places the war.,
in their historic context. ')
Miriam Novitch, curator of 1,
the art section of the Ghetto-,
Fighters' Museum, writes of
the museum's history and=;
how the works were ac-
quired. She speaks inti-
mately about the artists,
those who perished, and '-
those who survived.

Decency is the least of
laws, but yet it is the law –
which is most stictly ob

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