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April 29, 1988 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-04-29

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

Riots Like Birth Of A Child
For Israeli Lawyer Tsemel

DAVID HOLZEL

Staff Writer

A

Congregation Shaarey Zedek's Weisberg Concert last week drew nearly 3,000 persons to hear
"Not So Wild A Dream" in celebration of Israel's 40th anniversary. Dr. Morton Gould directed
Samuel Rosenbaum's oratorio for choirs and orchestra, which featured Cantor Chaim Najman
as soloist and Rabbi Irwin Groner as narrator.

Hebrew Free Loan Will Aid
Detroit. Families Of Olim

Iml• ■•■ •=w
DAVID HOLZEL

Staff Writer

D

etroit families of olim (immi-
grants to Israel) may now
apply to the Hebrew Free
Loan Association for a sum to cover
emergencies.
According to Harmon Bayer, presi-
dent of the Parents of North
American Israelis' Detroit branch,
interest-free loans of up to $2,000 may
be used for such short-term emergen-
cies as airfare in the case of illness or
death of a relative, or to cover brief
periods of unemployment.
"This is a new application of the
loans we've been making for 93
years," said Ruth Marcus, executive
director of Hebrew Free Loan.
The loans follow HFL guidelines:

They must be borrowed by a Detroiter,
must be cosigned by two Detroiters
and must be paid back in one year.
"These are not loans to olim.
These are loans made to Detroiters
who have family members living in
Israel," Marcus said.
Despite the restrictions, Bayer is
happy with the "breakthrough."
Emergency cash shortages and lack
of funds to pay for home mortgages
are two of the reasons North
American olim leave Israel. Any
funds to help them stay in . Israel are
welcomed, he said.
A PNAI-proposed $15,000
emergency loan fund is under con-
sideration by the Jewish Welfare
Federation. Several North American
cities have extablished mortgage
funds. Miami has the largest, with $1
million.

joke about the Palestinian
uprising is making the
rounds these days in Israel. It
goes like this:
Israeli soldiers patrolling a Gaza
refugee camp confront Achmad, an
eight-year-old stone thrower. "Who
told you to throw stones?" the Israelis
demand. "Where is your com-
mander?"
The child complies with the
Israelis and takes the soldiers to his
commander, Machmud, who is six
years old.
The story illustrates the frustra-
tion Israelis are feeling in encounter-
ing children everywhere in the
Palestinian uprising. "Youngsters are
really controlling the life there. They
have all the possible chutzpah that I
don't think the Palestinians ever
had."
This is the assessment of Lea
Tsemel, one of a handful of Jewish
Israelis who have made a career out
of defending West Bank and Gaza
Palestinians jailed by the Israelis.
Her appearance in Detroit this
week, part of an eight-city United
States tour, was sponsored by the
Palestine Aid Society of America. She
spoke Monday on the Wayne State
University campus to an audience of
50, comprised mostly of Arab-
Americans and members of Marxist
organizations.
She said the uprising, which
began in early December, gave her a
feeling of enormous hope. "We said,
this is the baby we were waiting for."
The Palestinians have shown
"unbelievable national unity" in the
face of Israeli attempts to put down
the violence. Even if Israel were to

succeed, "things will not ever be the
same again."
Lea Tsemel is a woman living on
the edge of her society. "You could call
me an anti-Zionist," she said. As she
describes the spectrum of the Israeli
body politic, it is clear where she
stands and who the good and bad
guys are.
"Two thirds of the population is
located on the right wing;' including,
she suggests, most of the Labor Par-
ty. Of the remaining one third, "two
thirds could be described as left
Zionists" who argue for the creation
of a Palestinian state because they
fear a Jewish Arabstate where the
Jews might be in the minority.
The last one third of the one third
— a growing segment of Israeli socie-
ty — are beginning to realize that
"Zionism is the problem," she told her
listeners. They say, "Why not a state
for whoever is living there, Jews or
Arabs?"
She traced the evolution of the
Israeli response to the uprising, which
began with "throwing candies" at the
Palestinians to end the violence. That
policy of the carrot was unsuccessful,
she said, so Defense Minister Yitzhak
Rabin introduced the policy of the
stick:
"The worst policy was when
Rabin said, 'Just break the bones of
the demonstrators: But when the
public could not take the beatings
anymore, they had to find another
solution?'
What followed was an increase in
lethal shootings, an "enormous wave
of arrests" and a greater reliance on
deportations which "are seen by every
Palestinian as worse than death."
Since the beginning of the upris-
ing, 225 Palestinians have died, she
said, citing a figure that is higher

Continued on Page 12

ROUND UP

UHS Changes
Fisher's Status

The board of United
Hebrew Schools voted this
week to name Ofra Fisher ex-
ecutive director of the agency.
Fisher has been serving as ac-
ting director of UHS since
November.
Dr. Barbara Goodman,
UHS president, said the ac-
tion was recommended by the
UHS executive committee
after consulting with the
Education Task Force of the
Jewish Welfare Federation.
Last fall, Federation an-
nounced that a search for a
replacement for former

superintendent Dr. Jerry
Teller would be suspended
pending a review of all Jewish
education delivery and fun-
ding in the Detroit area. The
study is expected to take
several years.
Goodman said the agency
had to move forward, and
could do so with Mrs. Fisher
as its head.
The UHS board also approv-
ed by-law changes which
merge the UHS and
Midrasha boards and
establish four divisions for
the agency: HUS elementary,
Community Jewish High
School, Midrasha College of
Jewish Studies and communi-
ty services.

Detroiters
Appear on TV

Several Detroit residents
will participate this weekend
in television programs focus-
ing on problems in the Middle
East.
At 8 a.m. Sunday, Rabbi
David Nelson of Cong. Beth
Shalom will be featured on
"Sunday Today" on WDIV-
TV, Channel 4. The segment,
hosted by Garrick Utley, will
profile an Arab and a Jewish
family in the Detroit area.
At 8:30 a.m. Sunday,
Ronald Karp and Mark
Schlussel will appear on "Se-
cond Look" on WXYZ-TV,

Channel 7. Schlussel, vice
president of the Jewish
Welfare Federation, and Karp,
a member of the executive
board of the Jewish Com-
munity Council, will be
discussing the "land for
peace" option.

Mitterrand Gets
Jewish Backing

Paris (JTA) — Jewish voters
gave strong support to incum-
bent Socialist Francois Mit-
terand in the first round of
the presidential elections
Sunday and are expected to
support him overwhelmingly
against his center-right rival,

Premier Jacques Chirac, in
the run-off elections on May 8.
This was indicated by exit
polls conducted Sunday
among 4,078 voters. The
results, published Tuesday in
the Catholic weekly La Vie,
show that 44.5 percent of
Jews voted for Mitterrand,
32.8 percent for Chirac and
11.6 percent for center-right
candidate Raymond Barre, a
former prime minister.
Questioned about how they
plan to vote in the run-off
elections, 63.3 percent of
Jewish respondents said they
would support Mitterrand
and 36.7 percent backed
Chirac.

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