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December 30, 1983 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1983-12-30

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

16 Friday, December 30, 1983

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Milson to Seek Support for Plan

By JESSE ZEL LIJRIE

(Copyright 1983, JTA, Inc.)

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"Doves to the left of him,
hawks to the right of him,
into the West Bank rode
Menahem Milson ." So
wrote a Labor Party friend
of the Hebrew University
professor of Arabic who be-
came the first civil adminis-
trator of the West Bank and
Gaza.
Some 10 months later,
Milson rode right out again,
bloodied but unbowed. Few
Israelis or Palestinians
looked with favor upon his
record as the first civil ad-
ministrator.
Milson may be the most
misunderstood man in Is-
rael. He is arriving in the
United States next week,
together with a Palestinian
associate, Mohammed Nas--
ser of Hebron, to explain his
program to the American
public. If he can make in-
roads among American inf-
luentials, perhaps the Is-
raeli media will listen to
him.
Under the auspices of
the American Jewish
Committee, the Milson-
Nasser team will travel to
New York and Washing-
ton, where they hope to
be received by Adminis-
tration officials.
What is the Milson pro-
gram? Why was Milson of-
fered the job of civil ad-
ministrator Of the West
Bank and Gaza? Why did he
take it and what did he do
that so antagonized the
right, left and center in Is-
rael?
It began with a 20,000
word article in Commen-
tary a few years ago in
which Milson castigated the
military government for not
opposing "PLO political
dominance in the ter-
ritories." He argued that
the PLO was a political
movement and not just a
gang of terrorists as por-
trayed in the Israeli media.
It must be fought politi-
cally, he argued, and not
just militarily. At present,
the military arm of the PLO
has been crushed by Israel;
its remnants have been de-
feated in Tripoli by Syria
and its Palestinian puppets,
but politically, the PLO is
stronger than ever in the
West Bank, Gaza and the
Palestinian diaspora.
Milson's program for
weakening the PLO politi-
cally was and is based on the
following principles: full
support of the Camp David
accords and UN Security
Council Resolutions 242
and 338; opposition to an-
nexation of the West Bank
by Israel; encouragement of
those Palestinians who rec-
ognize Israel and oppose
terrorism to form their own
political movements and to
negotiate with them for full
autonomy on the basis of the
Camp David Accords; and
the cessation of Jewish set-
tlements in densely-
populated Arab areas with
the future of present Jewish
settlements to be the subject
of negotiating.

State

Zip

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1

Former Defense Minis-
ter Ariel Sharon, who
knew Milson as an officer

in his paratrooper
brigade, noted his anti-
PLO stand, paid no atten-
tion to the rest of his pro-
gram, and offered him
the administrator's job.
Milson, who thought that
he could advance his
program by working
from within, accepted.

0-1

government departments
such as education, health,
agriculture and industry
with capable local Arabs he
was stymied by the Minis-

Milson found that his
powers were limited, his
budget meager and he be-
came a convenient media
fall guy for everything that
went wrong. His relations
with the Israeli and foreign
pressmen deteriorated
rapidly as he was blamed for
unnecessary brutality by
the security forces over
which he had not control
and for the book censorship
fiasco, exposed by Anthony
Lewis of the New York
Times, about which he
knew nothing.
When he tried to replace
Jewish heads of West Bank

(Continued on Page 17)

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