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December 25, 1987 - Image 12

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

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

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Continued from Page 7

ing the symbolism of the
meeting, Jackson said the
Pope had a "moral obligation
to give private counsel." He
misrepresents the fact that
the Austrian president was at
the Vatican not to receive con-
fession but as a head of state
and that he was lauded as a
"man of peace." No mention
whatsoever was made of
Waldheim's participation in
Nazi war crimes. One can on-
ly speculate on Jackson's
reaction had the Pope met
with the Grand Dragon of the
Ku Klux Klan and described
him in similar fashion.
On the Holocaust, his obser-
vations are about as insen-
sitive as possible. He states
that some 50 to 60 million
people died, skirting over the
objectives of the Final Solu-
tion, and he seems to defend
the world's inaction by
stating that "many people
found out very late just what
was happening" — an
apologia which history has
proven is simply not true.
He -still refused to
disassociate himself from
Louis Farrakhan, who at one
time served in his political
campaign. He said there has
been an "overreaction" to Far-
rakhan's statements and
drew an analogy between the
black minister's attacks on
Jews and the Anti-
Defamation League's position
paper on Jackson to
"discredit" his campaign. He
also cited the "threat" by
Rabbi Meir Kahane to picket
his home. Although Kahane's
politics of racism are
deplorable, public protest in
this country — the kind
Jackson has participated in
many times over the last 20
years — is not a "threat" but
a constitutional right.
What's more, when Tikkun
pointed out that Jews have
generally refuted Kahane's
racist statements and
policies, Jackson did not
acknowledge any responsibili-
ty to do the same in Far-
rakhan's case.
"Do not give me the assign-
ment or the responsibility to
address your relationship
with Farrakhan," said
Jackson. He said, "I am not
going to wallow in that," ex-
pressing the need to move
forward.
That is a callous position
from a man running for presi-
dent of the country on a plat-
form centered primarily on
human right's, civil rights and
a so-called Rainbow
Coalition.
He was very critical of
Israel's economic activity
with South Africa but has
failed to criticize other coun-
tries such as Germany and
France. He explained his posi-

tion by stating that American
-blacks have a different rela-
tionship with Jews than
France and Germany, adding
that "there are different ex-
pectations for Israel," thereby
admitting the inconsistency
and the double-standard of
his own policies.
The tragedy is that the split
between blacks and Jews
caused by Mr. Jackson may
never be repaired. The seeds
of distrust have been planted
to deeply.
But the even greater
tragedy is that Mr. Jackson
wasted an historic opportuni-
ty to unite these people closer
than ever before. Never before
has this country had a major
black candidate for president,
a candidate who understands
discrimination from personal
experience, and has unusual
power to express those
feelings.
He could have used that op-
portunity to speak not only
for blacks but Jews as well as
other minorities. Instead, he
was blinded by his own pre-
judice. That is the real

shande.

NEWS

I••••••••

Senate Adopts
Debt Plan

Washington (JTA) — The
Senate approved a foreign
debt refinancing plan Dec. 11
that could save Israel $2
billion over two decades. But
it must first pass the House
and be signed into law by
President Reagan. In the
same measure, which was
agreed to by voice vote, the
Senate decided to provide
Israel with $1.8 billion in
military assistance in fiscal
year 1988.

The debt plan, approved
Dec. 3 by the Senate Ap-
propriations Committee, af-
fects all foreign aid recipients
who are trying to pay off high-
interest loans. Israel current-
ly has the highest outstan-
ding debt in high-interest
loans, roughly $5.45 billion.

The plan is aimed at easing
the debt burden of major U.S.
allies to avert possible
default. The main benefici-
aries, Israel, Egypt and
Turkey, have borrowed
billions to buy arms and are
now struggling to pay off
their debts. A few years ago,
Israel received emergency
economic aid from the United
States.

For Israel, the $2 billion in
savings would come by allow-
ing private banks to refinance
Israel's debt, which lies cur-
rently in high-interest loans.

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