Announcement of the formation of a blue ribbon panel to study
the Jewish education delivery systems in Detroit has been greeted
with quiet applause, and some fears.
The Jewish Welfare Federation, perhaps precipitously, has
ordered a halt in the search process for a new superintendent of
United Hebrew Schools while priorities and overall goals are studied.
Supporters of Detroit's three Jewish day schools and the burgeon-
ing programs of our Reform congregations have been demanding for
more than a decade an increased share of Federation's expenditures
for education. Meanwhile, the UHS allocation has slowly shrunk as
its enrollment declined dramatically.
UHS has many valid arguements in support of its $850,000 an-
nual allocation from Allied Jewish Campaign funds. Its services to
the community go far beyond its elementary school enrollment. They
include the Community Jewish High School, the Midrasha College
of Jewish Studies, provision of services to other schools, and com-
munity use of its headquarters building on 12 Mile Road.
However, neither UHS nor the community at large can allow
itself to be trapped into a debate over funding. At least initially, the
scope of the committee should be on the best way to deliver Jewish
education to the entire community. Debates over individual programs
and funding must be set aside, for now, while the more important
issue of fundamental changes in Federation's support for Jewish
education are addressed.
Will UHS become a bureau of Jewish education, with or without
its own school? Will more funding be necessary from the Allied
Jewish Campaign, necessitating changing our funding priorities?
Or will more dollars be available so that Detroit can avoid reducing
assistance to other worthy areas?
These issues are fundamental to the decades-long debate over
Jewish education in Detroit. There are no easy answers, but we ap-
plaud our educational and communal leaders for placing more em-
phasis on the issue.
The Israelis, led by United Nations Ambassador Benjamin
Netanyahu, have persisted in their struggle to open the archives,
asserting that it is indispensable for a full understanding of the
Holocaust. According to Netanyahu, a handful of files examined by
Israel offered "new details about the death camps, staff lists of
Gestapo personnel, the numbers of Jews exterminated, the extent
of property confiscated, even records of entire Jewish communities
that disappeared without a trace."
Most of the tens of thousands of accused Nazi war criminals are
no doubt dead by now, but surely a significant number of them are
alive, free men protected by the UN ruling to keep their secrets hid-
den: In rejecting Israel's request last year, the UN said that open-
ing the archives "might disclose unproved rumors against innocent
people." But the commission that compiled the information did not
deal in "rumors" — only documented evidence — and opening the
archives will not "disclose" the identities of the accused. Their names
are already on file at the National Archives. According to Netanyahu,
"it is the all-important details, so essential to both judicial and
historical investigation, that are kept hidden."
The UN is currently holding "consultations" to decide the issue.
We strongly agree with Israel that for the sake of history and of
justice, the files must be opened. As Ambassador Netanyahu states,
"continued secrecy does not protect the innocent but the guilty.
iF NT' 38
Pict( AN AVENUE
PERES ANDt,LS STREET TO
CONFERENCE ON THE
The single greatest source of information about the Holocaust
yet to be studied is the United Nations' Nazi War Crimes Archives.
Now, after four decades of silence, there is an opportunity to open
A commission of respected jurists compiled the files during World
War II, recommending prosecution in 25,000 cases where strong
evidence was produced. But those archives have remained closed to
public scrutiny, and Israel's request last year that they be opened
As a Jew who is proud of be-
ing Jewish, and who believes
that Jesus is our Messiah, I
was disappointed by several
things that were said (in
"Confronting the Mis-
sionaries" Oct. 9.)
First of all, the issue is
whether Jesus is the
Messiah. The rabbi asks
where in the Jewish Bible the
Messiah's name is mentioned.
Maybe it doesn't say, "Look
Sons of Israel — when
Messiah comes His name will
be Yeshua, son of Joseph and
Mary," but the Holy Scrip-
tures do tell us that Messiah
FRIDAY, OCT, 30, 1987
will come before the destruc-
tion of the Second Temple, be
born in Bethlehem, be a
descendant of King David, do
miracles, enter Jerusalem on
a donkey, and be despised and
rejected by many in Israel.
How much more proof do
you need? It doesn't take a
Talmudic genius to figure out
who Messiah is. All you have
to do is read Isaiah 53 and
have an open mind and heart.
On ABA Move
Contrary to William J.
Wolf's assertion (Letters, Oct.
2), the Anti-Defamation
League of B'nai B'rith's deci-
sion not to favor abrogation of
the American Bar Associa-
tion's Declaration of Coopera-
tion with the Association of
Soviet Lawyers does not con-
stitute "aid to Soviet anti-
Semitism and propaganda."
On the contrary, ADL
reached its decision, after
much soul-searching, out of a
conviction that the declara-
tion affords the ABA a unique
opportunity to advance the
cause of Soviet Jewry — an
opportunity too good to pass
by . . .
The final resolution
adopted by a majority of the
national commission makes
clear that ADL has no illu-
sions about the nature of the
ASL, but believes the poten-
tial gains justify continuation
of the agreement, so long as
the ABA makes human
rights concerns a priority.
The evidence suggests that
the ABA is now doing just
The ABA-ASL issue is an
emotional one, about which
reasonable people can differ:
Mr. Wolf is entitled to his opi-
nion, but his insinuation that
ADL somehow attempted to
keep relevant information
from its decisionmakers is
patently false. The national
commission's decision was
based on a thorough
understanding of the issue
and all of its implications,
and ADL stands by it.
Robert J. Gordon
President, Michigan ADL
Continued on Page 10
The letter "Zionists
Killed" (Oct. 23) was not
authored by Michael
Traison as was at-
tributed. Mr. Traison
wishes to completely
dissociate himself from
the opinions expressed in
that letter, written in his
name by someone else.