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January 15, 1988 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-01-15

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

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Continued from Page 1

questions and answers had to
be abbreviated because of the
repeated heckling, hissing
and harrassment. Several
questions focused on the
Israeli army's reaction toward
the Palestinian uprising in
the territories. "If you play
with fire, you're going to get
burned!' replied the consul.
"We are not the ones who ig-
nited the fire. If you hit
soldiers with fire bombs, you
cannot expect that they won't
fire back."
Interest in the territories
has spread on the U-M cam-
pus. The Monday morning
edition of the Michigan Dai-
ly, the university's student

newspaper, published an
editorial denouncing Israel's
current conduct in the West
Bank which was signed by 15
pro-Palestinian groups. They
included the New Jewish
Agenda, The United Coali-
tion Against Racism and the
Palestine Solidarity
Committee.
After Brosh' speech, the
demonstators defended their
actions. Said one of them, U-
M sophomore Noah Sudar-
sky: "When you're in a posi-
tion of weakness, you choose
a more radical approach."

Linda Benson contributed to this
report.

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16

FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 1988

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here are two major
frustrations in making
Israel's case regarding
the current Gaza and West
Bank crisis.
One is that there is little
tolerance for the historical
argument, no matter how
logical. People's eyes tend to
glaze over when you mention
that Jordan itself is a Palesti-
nian state or when you sum-
marize the events of 1947 or
1967 which led to this
predicament. What they can
relate to is the image of
Israeli soldiers firing on
unarmed Arab youths or the
Palestinian demand for a
homeland.
The second frustration is
that when it comes to
hasbarah, a Hebrew word
somewhere between public
relations and propaganda,
Israel appears to be its own
worst enemy.
Following are six nuggets of
information that help put the
Arab-Israeli conflict in con-
text, and six hasbarah sug-
gestions for the Jerusalem
government.

The Conflict In
Perspective:

1. Twenty-one years ago,
Palestinian youths in the
West Bank and East
Jerusalem rioted against oc-
cupation and were fired on by
armed troops. Only the oc-
cupier at that time was Jor-
dan and the troops firing live
ammunition, not rubber
bullets, were soldiers in King
Hussein's Arab Legion.
The point is that the in-

habitants suffered worse
treatment under Arab rule
than under the Israelis, who
have improved their health,
educational and financial
situations.
2. The Palestinians call for
"self-determination!" Which
of the existing 20 Arab states
now has self-determination
rather than rule by king or
dictator?
3. Had the Arabs accepted
the 1947 partition, Israel
would be a tiny fraction of its
current size. Had the Arabs
not gone to war against Israel
in 1967, the Jewish • state
would be far smaller today.
Indeed, the boundaries the
Arabs now call for are the
ones they had prior to June,
1967. Why then did they go to
war?
4. There is no symmetry in
the Arab-Israel equation. For
while most Israelis favor
negotiations with the Arabs
to determine the future of the
West Bank and Gaza, the
Arabs do not recognize
Israel's right to exist. Who
can Israel negotiate with?
5. Gaza was under Egyp-
tian control from 1948 to
1967, but the residents never
received Egyptian passports.
Israel took over after Egypt
abandoned the territory. Un-
til there is a settlement,
Israel is bound under interna-
tional law to keep law and
order for the sake of the
population and to protect
itself — and Jordan — from
the PLO, which the U.S. con-
tinues to declare a terrorist
organization
6. The United States has
criticized Israel for "excessive
violence" in quelling the
Arab disturbances against
Israeli soldiers. Was it ex-

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