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July 26, 1985 - Image 12

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1985-07-26

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Friday, July 26, 1985


Luggage Outlet


Eye-Opening Visit

Continued from Page 1

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Bethelehem. The Lucases vis-
ited Yad Vashem, the Shrine
of the Book and the Knesset,
and Lucas met with several
Knesset members. One of his
favorite points was staying at
the King David Hotel, "and
waking up each morning to see
the walls of Jerusalem."
An immigrant absorption
center aiding the resettlement
of Ethiopian Jews won high
praise from one of Wayne
County's most powerful politi-
cians. "The Israeli adminis-
tration should be credited," he
said, "for their sensitivity and
humanity. They've been
quietly bringing these people
in since 1972, and they've kept
it under cover despite criti-
cism in other areas."
Lucas was interested in the
Israeli techniques used to edu-
cate the Ethiopians. "It is
amazing to see the Israelis
teach these youngsters how to
use pocket money and how to
ride a bus. It is also amazing to
see the readiness of these
young children to learn."
Other highlights for the Lu-
cases were a Sabbath dinner in
Jerusalem, a tour of the Jor-
dan Valley and a plant man-
ufacturing solar energy sys-
tems. At Kfar Blum, two el-
derly Israeli women stayed up
until after midnight to make
the late-arriving party com-
fortable. Lucas was astounded
to be served breakfast at 8 a.m.
the next day by the same

Floating in the Dead Sea —
"You can't get your feet back
down" — and visiting the min-
eral baths and climbing
Masada also impressed the
Detroit visitors. They also met
with Druze and Arab mayors.
Lucas commented on the loy-
alty of the Druze to Israel, and
the freedom of the mayors to
Voice their criticism of Israel,
although he added that the
mayors "re-wrote history a
"It was a worthwhile visit
for me as a human being,"
Lucas explained. "But as a
politician, I came away with a
greater understanding. I don't
want to be corny, but I now
have a deeper understanding
of Israel and the political deci-
sions the Israelis have to
make, surrounded as they are
by hostile elements. They also
have the problems of the
"I was impressed by the Is-
raelis' tenacity and willing-
ness to make sacrifices. If any-
one thinks they won't survive,
they're crazy."
Although Lucas tried to
keep his visit and his observa-
tions non-political, his admi-
ration for Israel continued to
surface. "I emphathise with
the Israelis," he said. "I com-
pare their thought processes to
my own. They seem to have a
common-sense position. When
you are faced with the things
that they are, I don't know
what you could do differently."


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Two global super-events that
took place in July were contrast-
ing studies — one in international
despair and the other, of hope for a
better, more civilized world.
In Nairobi, Kenya, some 10,000
women gathered from all over the
world to attend the United Na-
tions Decade for Women's Confer-
ence. Non-governmental women's
groups took part in Forum '85, the
unofficial part of the conference.
Women throughout the world,
especially in Islamic and develop-
ing countries, have very serious
problems of second-class status
and suppression of basic human
rights. Nairobi ought to have pro.
vided an opportunity for dealing ,
with those critical women's issues
in a constructive way. But some of
our worst fears have begun to be
Nairobi has become a place of
ideological warfare. The Soviet
Union, the PLO, Iran and Iraq,

among others, have exploited
women's issues for their own nar-
row political purposes. Nairobi is
rapidly becoming .a symbol of in-
ternational despair.
By contrast, - the international,
Live-Aid rock' concert organized
to raise funds for relief of African
famine is a symbol that lifts the
spirit. Beamed to nearly two bil-
lion people in 152 countries — in-
cluding the Soviet Union and
China — "the Global Jukebox" as
it was called, had one simple
human purpose that transcended
all ideology and politics. That
purpose was clearly stated by Bob
Geldof, the Irish rock musician
and coordinator of Live-Aid.. "To
me this is not a pop concert, not a
TV show. To me, it is simply a
means of keeping people alive."
Nairobi's adults have a lot to
learn from Live-Aid's children of
the 80s.
Copyright WNS-SevenArts

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