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February 25, 1983 - Image 11

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1983-02-25

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

Waldman

'

Hole,

Tourism Official Predicts Rise in Travel to Israel for 1983

OCEAN AT 43 ST.

MIAMI BEACH

U

By HEIDI PRESS

RESERVE NOW FOR

Although tourism to Is-
rael was down 2 percent in
1982, 1983 "shapes up to be
a big year" if January is any
indication, according to Rafi
Baeri, director of the Israel

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THE 'DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Government Tourist Office
for the Midwestern States.
Baeri, who was in Detroit
Monday and Tuesday to
participate in a travel agent
seminar at the Hyatt Re-
gency Hotel, said that
January figures already
showed an increase over
last year.
He said that travel to Is-
rael now is a bargain, add-
ing that hotel prices are
frozen at 1981-1982 levels.
Air fares also are inexpen-
sive, Baeri added, comment-
ing "it is cheaper to fly to
Israel than Hawaii."
Baeri said that in the
first six months of 1982,
tourism to Israel was up,
but the second half of the
year showed a decrease,
offsetting gains made in
the first half.
Asked what caused the
decrease, Baeri said "safety
had an influence on the
number of tourists coming
to Israel."
He emphasized that
safety and security were a
major concern of travelers
to Israel, but asserted that
Israel is a safe place to visit.
"The Israeli authorities
are doing their utmost to
keep it safe, not only for
tourists, but for my wife, my
children, everybody."
Baeri said about 45,000
persons, both Jewish and
non-Jewish, from the Mid-
west visit Israel annually.
On a national scale, 65 per-

RAFI BAERI

cent of the visitors are
Jewish, while from the
Midwest, 50 percent are
Jewish.
Baeri said he saw the
number of Jewish tourists
from the U.S. declining. He
said 25 percent of American
Jews had been to Israel at
least once, and there are
many repeat visitors among
them.
He attributed lack of
funds or disinterest as the
reasons for the other 75 per-
cent not coming to Israel.
He said the El Al strike,
also hurt tourism, but said
other airlines have picked
up Israeli-bound travelers.
In March, El Al will resume
its daily flight schedule out
of New York, he said.
Before coming to the
U.S., Baeri was a senior
economist with the

Ministry of Industry,
Trade and Tourism in
Jerusalem. Prior to ac-
cepting his current post
last summer, Baeri was
the deputy director of the
Israel Government
Tourist Office for the
Midwest.
In his current capacity,
Baeri covers 13 states visit-
ing the major cities to
encourage tourism to Israel.
He meets with community
leaders to encourage them
to lead groups to Israel, then
follows up by making pre-
sentations to groups. He
said his job is "to increase
knowledge and understand-
ing of Israel." Through the
tourist office, he supplies
materials and films to
groups interested in going
to Israel.

Friday, Februaq 25, 1983 11

Memorial Rites

JERUSALEM (JTA) —
Despite heavy rain, snow
and hail, a modest cere-
mony took place on Mt.
Herzl Sunday in memory of
fallen Israeli soldiers whose
burial places are unknown.
The service traditionally
takes place on the seventh
of Adar, the date on which
Moses died and was buried
in an unknown place.

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Poll: Americans View Israel
as U.S. Closest M.E Ally

NEW YORK (JTA) — A done the right thing about
clear majority of Americans the Lebanese massacre,"
continue to view Israel as the poll reported.
the United States' closest
But according to the poll,
ally in the Middle East al- many Americans, 62 per-
though many have indi- cent of those surveyed, still
cated disenchantment with view Israel as basically a
the manner in which the friendly state. The poll
government of Premier noted that in November
Menachem Begin has hand- 1982, 72 percent, and in
led the fate of former De- 1981, 81 percent, viewed Is-
fense Minister Ariel Sharon rael as a friendly state.
following the publication of
the findings of the commis- Shekel Is Down
sion of inquiry into the mas-
TEL AVIV (JTA) — The
sacre of Palestinians at the 'shekel celebrated its third
Sabra and Shatila refugee birthday at one-tenth of its
camps, according to the original value and purchas-
latest Harris poll published ing power. The new cur-
here.
rency was introduced on
The poll was conducted by Feb. 22, 1980, at the rate of
telephone between Feb. 11 one shekel for 10 old Israeli
and 16 and surveyed 1,248 pounds.
adults nationwide. Accord-
ing to the poll, 80 percent of
those surveyed agreed with
the claim that "unless Israel
punished those who allowed
the massacre to take place,
then Israel will lose much of
its claim to being a moral,
democratic country."
Seventy-two percent
agreed that "by keeping
Sharon in his Cabinet,
Begin has created a real
doubt that his government
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Furthermore, 67 percent
maintained that "since
Begin has not really gotten
rid of Sharon, Begin should
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