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March 06, 1987 - Image 15

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-03-06

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

George
Ohrenstein

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Continued from Page 1

the Israeli authorities.
"Why didn't they balance
her story," Mrs. Dulzin re-
sponded, "by interviewing
someone who had a family
member killed by terrorists?
Terrorism came first, then the
body searches. At least the
woman was allowed into Is-
rael. Israelis are not allowed
into Arab countries, nor the
Soviet Union or Malaysia, or
right now our table tennis
team into India." The only ex-
ception in the Arab world is
Egypt, which signed a peace
treaty with Israel.
Although she is concerned
by the media's shaping pe-
rceptions of Israel, she wel-
comes the opportunity to be
interviewed by the general
press, radio and television. De-
troit Zionist Federation offi-
cials Norman Naimark, Henry
Faigin and Karen Katz were
trying to arrange appearances
for her this week, but most of
her busy ten-day schedule in
Detroit is before Jewish
groups.
Those groups, she says, can
be defined by their age. "The
middle age and older groups
are more accepting of Israel be-
cause Israel has changed the
world for the Jews." Young pe-
ople, she said, take Israel for
granted. They are more critical
and look at the negatives. If
those negatives are shaped by
the media, however, they
"should be taken with a grain
of salt."
As an example; she pointed
to her view of Detroit as shaped
by that morning's television
reports: "Murders, robberies,
rapes on campus — these are
the exceptions, not the rule. It
is the same with Israel. You
cannot generalize."
Israel has been changing,
and will continue to change as
its society matures, Dulzin
said. She credits the middle of
the Israeli political spectrum
— Labor's • right wing and
Likud's left wing — for Israel's
peace, economic and social pr-
ogress. But the political middle
has paid a high price by corn-
pensating the other factions
and Mrs. Dulzin advocates a
change to direct elections and
members of the Knesset repre-
senting geographic districts.
Israel's political system
worked well hi the 1950s, she
said, when two-thirds of the
people had no experience with
democracy. She compared Is-
rael's system to the machine
politics and party bosses in the
U.S. during the waves of im-
migration. "As bad as that
sounds, at least the bosses took
care of the people. But now Is-
rael is a vibrant democracy,
mature enough to handle the
change." In the U.S., a right-
wing Republican administra-
tion or a left-wing Democratic
administration would not have
that great an effect on the daily
life of the American people,
"but in Israel, the government

makes life-and-death deci-
sions. It is time that we had
direct input" instead of the pe-
ople voting for a party and the
party electing the representa-
tives.
Israel's maturing society is
also evident in her economic
problems, "where the normal is
abnormal." Mrs. Dulzin
blamed Israeli emigration
(yerida) on the enormous tax
burden (60 percent tax rate).
"For our children, the outlook
is not bleak, but upsetting. It is
difficult for a young couple to
set up a home. So we have pe-
ople leaving.
"They are not afraid of the
big battles, but the little
battles. The big battles are
heroic, but the little battles are
enervating. The people get
demoralized."
The second biggest item (af-
ter defense) in Israel's national
budget is debt repayment and
Mrs. Dulzin bristles at any
suggestion that Israel has been
living too highly. "The Six-Day
War cost us $32 million and the
Yom Kippur War cost 20 times
that amount."
She believes the economic
situation is changing because
Israel's galloping inflation is
now under control, due in part
to the drop in 'oil prices, and
Israel's exports to Europe have
increased because they are
cheap in terms of European
currencies.
The change, however, is
leading to changes for Israeli
society. "In the 1950s," she ex-
plained, "we could set up fac-
tories to produce a product
with 100 workers or we could
set up factories to produce the
same product with 2,000 work-
ers. We opted for the 2,000 — it
served the state's social needs
but was a disaster when it
came to dollars and cents.
"Now, 20-30 years later, pe-
ople are havin-g to be re-
trained. It has led to some so-
cial unrest."

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