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April 05, 1985 - Image 30

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1985-04-05

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

30

Friday, April 5, 1985

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

NEWS

11

)

U.S. Official Directed
Airlift Of Ethiopian Jews

Richard Steinik
Jerry Neff

New York (JTA) — "Operation
Moses," Israel's secret airlift of
thousan6 of Ethiopian Jews from
the Sudan, "was planned and di-
rected on the ground by an officer
of the United States Embassy in
Khartoum," according to Los
Angeles Times correspondent
Charles Powers.
The U.S. official, who remained
unidentified at the request of the
State Department, was presented
with a citation from Vice
President George Bush earlier
this month when Bush visited the
Sudan. References to the opera-
tion were deleted from the public
version of the citation, Powers re-
ported.
In reporting previously undis-
closed working of the operation,
halted last January after prema-
ture disclosure of its details in Is-
rael, Powers noted the many de-
tails that had to be planned before
the operation was implemented.
This included the need for
"strong, long-range vehicles" to

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make the drive to Khartoum from
the refugee camps, as well as
safehouses in the Sudanese capi-
tal and Gedaref, near the refugee
camps.
Some 36 flights were made be-
tween Nov. 21, when the Israeli
airlift began, and Jan. 6, when it
was halted, the Times correspon-
dent said.
Powers said that about 500
Ethiopian refugees had been
stranded in Ethiopia at that point.
After the last 500 were airlifted
last week in the CIA-directed U.S.
airlift, a total of 7,800 Ethiopian
Jews had been airlifted out of the
Sudan, Powers said.
The CIA, Powers wrote, did not
have a hand in "Operation
Moses." The airlift began operat-
ing on a 24-hour turnaround,
using two shifts of bus drivers and
airline crew," Powers wrote. "In
short, Operation Moses, began to
function almost on its own — until
news of the evacuation broke in
Israel," Powers concluded.

Protests At French U.
Upsets Israeli Diplomat

Paris (JTA) — Israel's Ambas
sador to France, Ovadia Soffer,
has publicly protested the failure
of Le Mans Law School President
Jean Pierre Gelard to call the
police when some 200 pro-
Palestinian students prevented
the Israeli envoy from delivering
a scheduled lecture at the school,
about 100 miles southwest of
Paris, last week:
The students, mainly Palesti-
nians and North Africans,
blocked the entrance to the lec-
ture hall, waved anti-Israel post-
_ ers and shouted anti-Israel slo-
gans through bull horns. French
law authorizes the head of a uni-
versity to summon police to cam-
puses to quell disturbances. But
Gelard refused to exercise his
authority in this instance.
A spokesman for the university
said last Wednesday that Gelard
had written Soffer warning him of
possible trouble. He also told the

envoy that he would not meet
with him, a normal courtesy to a
visiting lecturer. becaus he per-
sonally oppposed Israel's policies
in south Lebanon.
Soffer protested what he said
was Gelard's "refusal to fulfill his
responsibilities". He said he
would continue his lecture tour of
several French universities.
A large proportion of the Le
Mans Law Schools' students are
Palestinians, Moroccans and
Tunisians. The honorary
president of the Jewish commu-
nity in Le Mans, Jacques Isar,
said that the community had not
been informed in advance of the
Ambassador's scheduled lecture.
He said that if the 150 Jewish
families in the city had known
Soffer was to be there, they would
have tried to mobilize public opin-
ion on Israel's behalf and to ar-
range for more Jewish and pro-
Israel students to be on hand.

Magen David Adom
Workers Go On Strike

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Tel Aviv (JTA) — Employees of
the Magen David Adorn Monday
began a work stoppage, protesting
that their salaries had not been
paid, effectively shutting down all
services of the first aid society.
The employees rejected a last
minute appeal from the Health
Ministry to call off the strike, say-
ing that the employees' salaries
would be paid into their bank ac-
counts later in the week.
The workers, however, contend
that they no longer believed the
promises of the ministry, and said
that payment at the end of the
week would be too late for them to
make their pre-Passover pur-
chases.
MDA management blamed the
Finance and Health Ministries for
not transferring in time alloca-
tions due to them. But Health

Ministry oficials countered, blam-
ing the MDA leadership with
mismanagement and saying that
funds had been transferred but
used by the management for pur-
poses other than salaries.
MDA management countered
that they had to use available
funds to pay for insurance on the
ambulances, which would not be
able to move on the roads without
insurance.

A senior MDA official in
Jerusalem, asked how the first aid
society would react to urgent calls
for help, said they would return to
work in the event of a terrorist
attack, "but God help those in
need of our services," he added.
Shortly after the strike began,
MDA refused to aid a boy injured
in a traffic acciden

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