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March 27, 1987 - Image 2

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-03-27

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

PURELY COMMENTARY

PHILIP SLOMOVITZ

The Many Moral Issues Challenging Many Of Us

"Right and Wrong: Does Any One
Care?" was the subject of the award
luncheon sponsored by American
Jewish Committee's magazine Present
Tense. A news release about that ses-
sion introduced the report of the dis-
cussions in which prominent spokes-
people participated. It gave this de-
finitive summary of major issues
suggested by the theme of the confer-
ence:

It's there when we open
the newspaper — scandal and
corruption stretching from
Wall Street to Pennsylvania
Avenue. It's there when we
walk down city streets — pov-
erty and despair etched in the
faces of the homeless and
lonely. The family structure is
weakening, violent crime is
running rampant, business
practices are less and less on
the up and up ... and it
doesn't even shock us any-
more. What happened to those
values we once called "tradi-
tional?" Are the greedy and
apathetic destined to inherit
the earth after all?

For the very sensitive Jews, who

endlessly aspire for strict retention of
the highest moral codes in all human
experiences, there is the special chal-
lenge created by the personnel of
Jewish origin involved in the Wall
Street scandals.
The sensitive Jews now have an
added ethical test in the Israeli affairs
entitled "Spying."
Under normal human conditions,
both agonies, Wall Street and spying,
can be grouped into the single label of
"Right and Wrong," and to the ques-
tion "Does any one care?" there is a
normal reply: some do, some don't;
and in the long run the evil will be
rejected and on the record at least the
preached moralities usually triumph.
It is different for the Jews.
Chicanery on Wall Street is inex-
cusabe; spying against the friendliest
of nations is criminal. Therefore the
contempt for those who betray trust
in the financial transactions, and a
sense of shame when a Jew who
claims devotion to Israel as incite-
ment to spying arouses humiliation.
The latter occurrence is especially
abhorrent in the charged official Is-
rael government involvement.
Meanwhile there is a continuing
resort to every conceivable means of

indicting Israel. There is a reverbera-
tion of charge after charge, the claim
that the government of Israel pro-
vided the spies (the Pollards) with
large sums of money. Israel is accused
of forging British passports for use by
the spies. There are some admissions
of guilt, some denials. The surprising
development is the growing senti-
ments in Israel in support of the ac-
cused spies and funds are gathered in
an accompanying demand that they
may be permitted to settle in Israel.
What's the explanation? The
simplest is, as we are now reminded,
that "spying is the world's second old-
est profession" (Prostitution was the
first). Even simpler is the fact that
espionage has been and remains an
"intelligence" factor everywhere, and
no nation is excluded from it.
But the Big Sin in the current
situation involving the Pollards is
that they spied on the United States
"out of their love for Israel." Now it is
denied, as originally claimed in some
quarters, that the documents secured
for Israel by them were insignificant.
That is why American Jews are so
greatly distressed. That is why Israel
will have more to account to world
Jewry for blunders in which her lead-

Travel Guides Increase
Enthusiasm For Tourism

Tourism retains its commitments
despite the frequent threats by ter-
rorists. Therefore the enthusiasm
aroused by the constantly republished
Jewish travel guides. They have an
encyclopedic value in the gathering of
facts about Jewish communities
throughout the world. Therefore the
magnetism of the many Jewish centers
which invite the interest of travelers.
Such interests keep increasing, an
indication evident in two such travel
guides that have an uninterrupted
presence and a constant republishing.
One is the standard volume, now
in its 40th year — the travel guide
published by the London Jewish
Chronicle. The other is the retention of
the basic travel articles that have reg-
ularity in the Hadassah magazine.
A Detroit interest greets The
Jewish Traveler (Doubleday), subtitled
"Hadassah Magazines's Guide to the
World's Jewish Communities and
Sights." It was edited by native De-
troiter Alan M. Tigay, who assumed
the editorship of Hadassah magazine in
1980.
The major Jewish world centers
are included and the 400-page book as-
sumes an historiography of commenda-
ble merit.
The 40th annual travel volume of
the London Jewish Chronicle has just
been issued as a 300-page book under
the title The Jewish Travel Guide.
Sepher-Hermon Press distributes it in
the U.S.
Sidney Lightman is the editor of
the LJC book which is recommended
"for the wandering Jew from an Acal-
pulco, Mexico to a synagogue in
Zhitomir, USSR." The annotation indi-
cates that if a city exists it will be

found in this guidebook.
That is why it is especially
noteworthy that the LJC book includes
four columns with listings of
synagogues, community centers, Hillel
foundations, hospitals, schools, homes
for the aged and many other projects in
the following Michigan cities:
Alpena, Ann Arbor, Battle Creek,
Bay City, Benton Harbor, Detroit, East
Lansing, Flint, Grand Rapids, Jackson,
Kalamazoo, Lansing, Port Huron,
Saginaw, South Haven and Traverse
City.
It stands to reason that in all in-
stances the travel guides lead the
tourists to historic places, synagogues,
communal centers and also provide ad-
vice on available Jewish restaurants,
something especially important for
kashrut observers.
The travel guides are valuable in a
multiple of respects. Those available
encourage tourists and the traveler to
be fully acquainted Jewishly with the
places visited.

Kibbutz Inns
Of Israel

Israel continues to highlight the
major tourist attractions for the Jewish
traveler, and many tens of thousands of
Christian tourists flock annually to the
Holy Land. The Israeli attractions
therefore continue to retain the spot-
lights.
The discriminating traveler will
never consider a visit to Israel complete
without an overnight or a weekend
stay at a kibbutz. Therefore those with
vision among the kibbutzniks have

ership is involved than to the United
States.

The basic moralities nevertheless
will not be besmirched, whether on
Wall Street or in the diplomatic rela-
tions between Israel and the United
States. Where there is guilt involving
irresponsibility, "cheating," corrup-
tion, abuse of delegated privileges, the
"sins" will never be tolerated in the
public opinion that involves the
partnership between Israel and world
Jewry — particularly American
Jewry. But Israel will not be the suf-
ferer. The People of Israel must be
identified as primary in the Fellow-
ship Israel that is world Jewry. The
latter will surely exert every imagin-
able influence to correct errors.

An Emerging Hope

Perhaps much good will emerge
out of what could be a national
tragedy for Israel. The new nation is
maturing, is aging. Perhaps the new
generation in the end of the first
half-century of the nation's sover-
eignty will desire changes in leader-

Continued on Page 30

Haggadah Publishing
Season Commences

built an industry by establishing inns
for visitors.
It is almost routine for planners of
tourism itineraries to include Ayelet
Hashachar or Gesher Haziv or Ginosar
for a day-long visit or a sleep-over. The
role of the kibbutz inns is splendidly
described in a valuable addendum to
world travel guides, The Kibbutz Inns
of Israel: A Personal Odyssey (Hippoc-
rene Books) by Abe Kramer. The
author settled in Israel with his family
in 1975 after a 35-year journalistic
career in the United States. In his de-
scription of some 27 kibbutzim and life
there, he depicts the inns the kibbut-
zim established for visiting guests.
As indicated, these are personal
evaluations by an able author. There-
fore every kibbutz inn in this handy
120-page book is a personal and inti-
mate guide that is certain to create
enthusiasm.
More than that: every inn story,
every kibbutz and moshav background
adds a chapter to Israeli historical re-
cords. That's how intimately the author
provides the personal interest to his
creatively-researched task of introduc-
ing the inns and in the process to trace
the history of the kibbutzim and
moshavim that established them.
Location maps assist the reader of
Kramer's book in attaining an acquain-
tance with the inn and its history.
Nearby sites are described and that re-
vives history in educating the traveler.
There is a flavor to the descriptions
that makes the tourist a part of Israeli
life while benefiting from the travelng
experiences.
Thus, travel guides attain great
value, and the books about Israel's inns
are expecially fascinating.

Immediately after Purim, the
Passover Haggadah commences its ap-
peal for widespread interest, re-
reading, studying the commentaries on
the traditional and historic text and
continuing an admiration for the illus-
trations and the photographic
enrichments that are a result of the in-
spir,ation of the ages.
The text always predominates, and
the translation is important. So, also, is
the transliterations that is vital for
those whose knowledge of Hebrew is
minimal.
It is the text intended for a totality
of family participating that is espe-
cially vital. Such an approach is in one
of the first Haggadot to make their
post-Purim appearance. In A Family
Haggadah (Kar-Ben Copies), Shoshana
Silberman combines all the listed qual-
ities that make a Haggadah appealng
to all the participants.
The illustrated factor by Katherine
Janus Kahn provides the spirited note
for the portions to be recited or shared
by the Seder participants.
Special consideration should be
given to the subtitle of this family
Haggadah. "In every generation" is an
emphasis on a major theme in the
Haggadah. It lends weight to the
author's intention of making the Hag-
gadah and its usage a collective com-
mitment.
Seder songs supplement value to
this Haggadah, with the Hebrew text
and the commentaries and translations.
Supplementary Yiddish songs, in-
clusion of the Partisan Song and The
Matzo of Hope make the Haggadah of
current historical value.
Author Silberman is education di-

Continued on Page 30

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