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September 30, 1983 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1983-09-30

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Boris Smolar's

`Between You
. . . and Me'

Emeritus, JTA

(Copyright 1983, JTA, Inc.)

THE NEW YEAR OUTLOOK: The new Jewish year
started with the resignation of Menahem Begin as prime
minister of Israel for personal reasons, but in an atmos-
phere of relaxation in the relations between the White
House and Israel; with improved pro-Israel moods among
members of both houses of the U.S. Congress; with renewed
sympathy for Israel among many Americans who criticized
Israel's move in Lebanon — a criticism caused by mislead-
ing information carried by the American media.
The new year also starts with increased respon-
sibilities and problems for the American Jewish commu-
nity in its communal life. Also, with an indefinite outlook
for the fate of Jews in the Soviet Union.
The strain which developed in the White House toward
Israel — primarily as a result of Israel's failing to notify
President Reagan in advance of its intention to enter Leba-
non to halt the Palestine Liberation Organization from
continuously assaulting Israeli settlements near the Leba-
non border — is now a matter of the past. Gradually, Rea-
gan began to realize that the Israel government took the
right step in the direction of making its border secure from
PLO attacks.
He is now satisfied with Israel's ousting of PLO leader
Yasir Arafat from Lebanon and with the destruction of his
forces there. He is also softer on the issue of the Israeli
settlements in Judaea and Samaria, the areas in which
Israel is willing to grant administrative autonomy to the
Arab population.
Today, Syria and the PLO — not Israel — are Reagan's
problems, with the PLO causing trouble in both Lebanon
and Nicaragua.
Documents captured in Lebanon when the PLO forces
were smashed there by Israel revealed that Salvadorean
guerrillas were, like the Nicaraguan, trained in terrorism
in PLO camps; also that Arafat promised the insurgents in
El Salvador aid in arms and aircraft, which he reportedly
delivered. The Sandinistas and the Salvadoreans are both
sworn to the destruction of Israel. A Salvadorean guerrilla
bombed the Israel Embassy in San Salvador "to show sol-
idarity with the Palestinian people."
Jewish community starts the new year with growing finan-
cial complications in supporting Jewish institutions de-
pending on federal aid and assistance from Jewish federa-
Among the major problems which Jewish communities
will face during the new year are, aid to the growing
number of needy aged Jews and assistance to the rapidly
increasing number of "single parent families."
In community after community the plight of one-
parent families is considered one of the most — if not the
most — urgent problem. More than 40 percent of the
185,000 children in summer camps affiliated with the
Jewish Welfare Board came this summer from "one parent"
families. This does not include children in camps not con-
nected with the JWB, camps of various Jewish movements
and religious groups.
The breakdown of the Jewish family — already a mat-
ter of grave concern for Jewish community leadership —
will in the new year become even a greater challenge for the
community. Spokesmen for the American Jewish com-
munity are worried about major population losses. It is
taken for granted that children of mixed marriages — of
intermarriages in which neither partner has converted out
of their religion by birth — will not be socialized as Jews
and will grow up without a firm sense of Jewish identity;
their children will definitely be lost to Jewry.
itself. The Kremlin is just as anti-Semitic now as was the
Czarist regime. While doing everything to make life for
Jews unbearable, the latter came to the conclusion that
emigration was the best way "to get rid" of many of them. It
began to issue emigration passports to Jews right and left,
within only a few days after the asking. This was what
brought the huge mass-immigration of Russian Jews to the
United States early this century. That the same can happen
also with the Kremlin is not precluded, since the Soviet
government must always be on the defensive before the
Free World with regard to its mistreatment of its Jews.
Until the time comes — hopefully soon — Jews in the
Free World must naturally continue their fight for unham-
pered Jewish emigration from the Soviet Union and for full
rights for Jews remaining in the country. At present there
are still more than 2,500,000 Jews in the Soviet Union.
Currently, some 500,000 Jews possess affadavits from Is-
rael. Many of them are holding the invitations and waiting
before submitting them together with formal applications
for exit visas in the hope that more promising times for
Jewish emigration will come.

Friday, September 30, 1983 1

Halting Cults

Rubin R. Dobin of the Jews
for Jews organization has
initiated a campaign to halt
increased cult and missio-
nary activity in Israel.
Rabbi Dobin recently re-
turned from Israel, where
he worked with the gov-
ernment on a plan to control
the growing cult movement.
The Miami-based rabbi has
prepared a report on the cult
problem in Israel.
To obtain a free copy of
this report, send a long,
self-addressed stamped en-
velope to Jews for Jews Is-
rael Facts Report, P.O. Box
6194, Miami Beach, Fla.


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