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December 25, 1987 - Image 1

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-12-25

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Arab Unrest Takes
New Dangerous Form


Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — Once upon a time, it
was enough to call out the fire brigade
to quell disturbances in Judea and
Samaria — also known as the West
Bank — and Gaza. The firemen turn-
ed on the hoses and the Palestinians
simply melted back into their homes.
But no more. Today, 20 years later,
the children of those demonstrators,
like the children of Soweto, are con-
temptuous of such timidity.
Imbued with a powerful
nationalist and religious purpose and
animated by a profound sense of op-
pression, they are defiantly facing
down Israeli troops who do not shrink
from using live ammunition.
The immediate cause of the latest
disturbances are to be found in two
unconnected incidents: the fatal stab-
bing of an Israeli merchant in Gaza
City two weeks ago and a subsequent

traffic accident in which four Gaza
residents were killed.
Rumors abounded that the Israeli
driver had deliberately rammed his
truck into the Palestinians as an act
of revenge for the stabbing.
Nourished in aggrieved minds,
the rumors became reality. Passions
flared and the young people of Gaza
— an overcrowded, overheated, over-
sized slum — took to the streets.
The sense of outrage quickly
spread, setting fire to the West Bank
and engulfing not only the students
but also the merchants of the major
cities — Ramallah, Nablus, Hebron —
who showed their support for the
youngsters by shutting their shops in
a strike of solidarity.
Never mind that a certain amount
of "persuasion" coercion, threats and
intimidation was necessary to impel
the businessmen to act. The combined
effect was to afflict Israel's security





Continued on Page 10

Curbing The Coverage

Stung by a wave of damaging
publicity during the latest bloody
convulsions in the West Bank and
Gaza, Israeli officials are reported
to be considering ways of imposing
greater control over the media.
Earlier this week, Prime
Minister Yitzhak Shamir was
reported to have complained that
television coverage of the unrest
had inflicted deep wounds on Israel
among its allies in the United
States and Europe. He was also
reported to have asked Chief of
Staff Dan Shomron to consider
ways of curbing the coverage.
The officials have not produced
a blueprint for inhibiting press

DECEMBER 25, 1987 / 4 TEVET 5748

freedom, but they appear intent on
using "security" as a pretext for
keeping the journalists and televi-
sion crews away from the action.
Avi Pazner, the Prime
Minister's media adviser, sounded
an ominous note this week when
he acknowledged that Shamir had
indeed discussed media coverage of
the unrest with General Shomron.
Shamir, he said, had expressed
concerned about the safety of jour-
nalists in the field and also about
the interference they caused to
Israeli troops during the
upheavals. "There were certain in-
cidents in which journalists took

A recent conference of
Jewish journalists from
all over the world
explored the inherent
tensions between
advocacy and objectivity.
And visits with Israelis
revealed their visions
and realities.

Continued on Page 22


Prime Minister Shamir addresses Jewish media conference.

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