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August 07, 1987 - Image 22

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-08-07

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

I NEWS

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The

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22

I

FRIDAY, AUG. 7, 1987

frastructure" for producing
the bomb. But, he added:
"Israel has not yet crossed the
threshold of manufacturing
an atomic bomb."
In fact, on one very impor-
tant level, it is irrelevant
whether Israel does or does
not have the bomb.
The capitals of Lebanon,
Syria, Jordan and Egypt are
all within an easy day's drive
from Jerusalem or Tel Aviv. If
Israel were to launch a
nuclear strike to destroy any
one of them, it would certain-
_ ly destroy itself in the process.
Arye Eliav, a veteran Israeli
politician who resides on the
far left of the Labor Party, pro-
vided a graphic description of
what might be in store for the
Middle East in his book Land
of the Hart: "lithe Arabs ever
_ succeed in bringing Israel to
the brink of annihilation," he
wrote, "they will also be
annihilated.
"Not a vestige or trace will
remain of the entire region
and its inhabitants. Neither
Jews nor Arabs. There will be
no victors or vanquished. On-
ly dust and total destruction
will remain.
"Is this what the Arabs are
dreaming of? Do they unders-
tand that in the technological
race towards resolving the
conflict by force, they have
missed the train?"
What, ultimately, is more
important than whether or
not Israel has the bomb is

whether its enemies believe it
has the bomb.
There is a strong body of
opinion — from all sides of
the Israeli political spec-
trum —which advocates a
continuation of the policy of
ambiguity on the subject of
Israel's nuclear potential.
Said Shimon Peres, leader
of Israel's Labor Party: "I
know that the Arabs suspect
us. I know that this suspicion
is a deterrent force. Why
- should we dissipate that
suspicion? Why should we
resolve it?"
Prof. Ne'eman, who
represents the political polar
opposite, also favors a con-
tinuation of the current
vagueness: "All the reasons
which are given for not sup-
plying the Arabs with these
weapons will disappear the
moment Israel knowingly
and openly relies on nuclear
weapons.
"If Israel has it," he told
Israel Army Radio, "then of
course the Arabs will have to
have it as well?'
Does Israel have the bomb?
The jury is still out — and it
will remain out until Israel
provides a definitive answer
to the question and permits
international inspections of
its facilities.
Israeli leaders are, mean-
while, unlikely to oblige a
curious world with either a
definitive answer or an open-
house at Dimona.

Derojanjuk Undaunted
By Alibi's Collapse

Jerusalem (JTA) — John
Demjanjuk, into his second
week of testimony in his own
defense, is plainly not going
to be broken by the prosecu-
tion in one sudden collapse of
his alibi.
On Tuesday, Judge Dov
Levin gravely and repeatedly
warned Demjanjuk that he
was undertaking a "grave
responsibility" by not giving
direct answers to the
prosecutor.
The questions, though
seemingly technical, were key
to his wartime alibi. They
focused on his admittedly
false entries on his U.S. im-
migration application, sub-
mitted at a displaced persons
camp after World War II. The
defendant had written that
he spent the war years as a
farmer in Poland in the
village of Sobibor.
Questioned about the ac-
tual process of filling out that
form, Demjanjuk seemed to
be avoiding answering, incur-
ring Levin's wrath. "We will

take that into account," Levin
thundered.
Demjanjuk says he lied to
Americans in order to avoid
being repatriated to the
USSR. The prosecution says
he lied to hide in order to con-
ceal his true identity — Ivan
the Terrible, butcher of
Treblinka.
Demjanjuk's lie may have
been understandable in the
circumstances, Prosecutor
Michael Shaked conceded,
but why did he choose the
town Sobibor as his false
residence in Poland? Why not
choose a place' he claims to
have been familiar with, such
as Rowno, the POW camp in
Poland where he spent two
weeks, or Chelm, where he
claims to have been imprison-
ed 18 months?
Contradicting his previous
testimony, Demjanjuk does
not now claim that Sobibor
was a misspelling of his U.S.
immigration form, and that
the town in fact chosen was
Sambor.

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