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August 12, 1988 - Image 48

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-08-12

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

I NOTEBOOK I

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Martex Vellux Blankets

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% OFF

Fieldcrest Popularity
Terry Towels

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Come In and See More of Our Selection
Don't Miss This Event!

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Sun. 12-5

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1:317CC

Sadat, Carter and Begin at Camp David. Trusting Sadat was one of the
wisest decisions Israel made.

Hindsight Is The Best
In Decision Making

CARL ALPERT

Special to The Jewish News

H

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48

FRIDAY, AUGUST 12, 1988

aifa — Decisions! All
of us are called upon
to make them all the
time. Governments are called
upon to make crucial deci-
sions which may have far-
reaching influence on the
welfare or security of the
nation.
Not long ago, I attended a
symposium dealing with the
subject of the state's in-
telligence services and na-
tional security. A brilliant ar-
ray of military and academic
personnel discussed such sub-
jects as strategic surprise,
escalation in critical relations
and decision-making based on
available information.
The talks triggered con-
templation of the many deci-
sions — some with major im-
plications, and some minor —
the State of Israel has been
called upon to make in its 40
years. In retrospect, we can
begin to realize which were
justified and which, despite
great confidence at the time,
turned out to be mistaken.
For example: In the early
1950s, in order to follow the
American hard line on the
People's Republic of China,
Israel rejected peaceful
gestures from Peking, and
refused to establish
diplomatic relations. Even-
tually, the U.S. made its peace
with China, but Israel re-
mained out in the cold.
The draining of the Huleh
swamps was hailed in its day
as a major feat of the conquest
of nature, one of the great
Zionist achievements. The
realities of today indicate that
it was probably a grave
mistake, upsetting the

balance of nature and
creating grave ecological con-
ditions. It may well be that
the Huleh -lake, which had
disappeared from the maps,
may yet make its
reappearance. -
On the other hand, the con-
struction of the national
water carrier, to convey
surplus waters of the north to
central and southern parts of
the country, which some had
termed a fool's project, turn-
ed out to be fully justified and
a wise investment.
Within the past year or two,
the state has taken three im-
portant decisions, and time
alone ,wil tell if the verdict
was the correct one.
First was the conclusion to
halt construction of the canal
from the Mediterranean to
the Dead Sea; second was the
painful decision to halt con-
struction of the Lavi plane;
and third was the lack of deci-
sion to go ahead with con-
struction of nuclear power
plants.
The war in Lebanon will
long remain subject for
dispute. With the passage of
time, it appears that the in-
itial invasion,up to a certain
point, was justified, but the
decision to enter Beirut
might have been a mistake.
There are still many in
Israel who challenge that lat-
ter statement, insisting that
the conquest of Beirut could
have an enormous favorable
result on the Middle East
situation, if it had been ex-
ecuted decisively and without
the political foot-dragging in
which it ultimately became
bogged down.
In 1967, as Nasser's forces
were mobilizing along our
Continued on Page 50

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