Friday, November 30, 1984
THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
Jewish National Fund
Dec. 1 & 2
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Debate on the Jews .
I read with great interest .Jef-
frey Guyer's article (Nov. 16) on
Prof. Francis Shor's recent trip to
Nicaragua with the Witness for
First of all, I want to commend
Mr. Guyer on a well-written piece.
I feel that Prof. Shor's point of
view was very adequately and
fairly presented. However, one
sentence bothered me. The re-
porter referred to the "forced ex-
pulsion" of Jews fr6m Nicaragua.
Since this statement was not part
of a quote, I take it to mean that it
was presented as a fact.
Recently I had to give a talk on
the subject of the Nicaraguan
Jews. Anticipating a lot of hard
questions and even hostility to
conclusions not consistent with
popular wisdom, I researched as
thoroughly as possible. I also
want to state that I approached
the subject with an open mind and
at first reading was ready to be-
lieve the charges of anti-Semitism
which were made by Rabbi Ro-
senthal of the AUL. Further read-
ing convinced me that he practi-
cally stood alone in his charges.
His two witnesses, Abraham
Gorn and Isaac Stavisky, two
Nicaraguan Jews now living in
Miami, Fla., were among the
wealthiest people in Nicaragua. It
was a known fact that Mr. Gorn
was an intimate of members of the
Somoza family. When he left the
country he took with him the To-
rahs and other artifacts of the
synagogue. It therefore is not sur-
prising that the Sandinista gov-
ernment considered the building
abandoned. Now, even though the
government offered to return the
synagogue to the Jewish congre-
gation, there are not enough prac-
ticing Jews remaining to form a
minyan or to afford the mainte-
nance -of the building.
The 50 Jews who left Nicaragua
were among the 10,000 upper and
middle class people who left either
because they had been closely
associated with the Somoza re-
gime or because they did not want
to live under the Sandinista gov-
ernment. To say that these 50
Jews, in a period of turmoil and
many problems were singled out
for special persecution, represents
either the height of self-
importance or paranoia. Take
your pick. The facts do not support
any evidence of forcible expulsion.
Aiding the starving
Jews in Ethiopia
Upon recognizing the crisis
situation of the remnant of the
Ethiopian Jewish community
now facing starvation, my family
has_ decided to send the money
that would have purchased our
Chanukah gifts as a donation to
aid the Falashim.
We would like to urge others in
our community to do the same.
Perhaps we can help some of those
in need to survive and be aided in
the struggle to leave Ethiopia.
The address for donations is:
Joint Distribution Committee
60 E. 42nd Street
Suite 1914, Department M
New York, New York 10165
Attention: National Conference
on Ethiopian Jewry
What could be a better
Chanukah gift than saving lives?
Steven J. Greene
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