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October 28, 1988 - Image 34

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-10-28

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

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The
Conference
of
Presidents also said in a
statement Monday that
AIPAC had used no other
means to further the
American Jewish communi-
ty's interests on Capitol Hill
than those allowed under the
U.S. law.
In a separate statement,
the Anti-Defamation League
of B'nai B'rith reiterated its
support for AIPAC and said
"60 Minutes" had failed to
show that its success stems
"not so much from lobbying
but the commitment of Jews
and non-Jews all over the
country who are dedicated to
the well-being of relations
between the United States
and Israel."

Jewish Telegraphic Agency

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Percy, who blames his
defeat in 1984 in part on
AIPAC influence, asked
rhetorically, "Who is running
our foreign policy?"
Wallace also quoted a CBS
poll in which 630 people were
asked, "Do you think it is
right that the United States
gives more money in foreign
aid to Israel than any other
country?" Wallace said 13
percent said yes, 72 percent
said no and 15 percent did not
know.
In its statement Monday,
AIPAC said that in virtually
every public opinion poll, "the
American public has con-
sistently reaffirmed the
strong support for Israel as a
friend and ally of the United
States!'
AIPAC said that U.S.
foreign assistance to Israel is
based on Israel's role as a
"critical United States ally, a
full-fledged democracy, strug-
gling to survive in a hostile
and unstable part of the
world!"
The lobbying group said
"60 Minutes" has attempted
to depict lawful participation
in the political process as
"something negative and
sinister!"
AIPAC said it is preparing
a more detailed refutation of
Wallace's charge.

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organized Jewish communi-
ty" on at least three recent
issues related to Israel.
The
Conference
of
Presidents of Major American
Jewish Organizations held an
emergency meeting Monday
to discuss the fallout of the
"60 Minutes" broadcast.
The meeting, at which
members of the umbrella
organization agreed that the
report was "filled with distor-
tions, innuendoes and inac-
curacies," was the second in a
week called to discuss
criticism of AIPAC.
The central theme of
Wallace's report was that
AIPAC has exerted undue in-
fluence to ensure that Israel
receives $3 billion in U.S.
foreign aid, with little or no
congressional debate. The
report appeared to charge
that AIPAC has engineered
the defeat of U.S. senators and
representatives because of
their poor voting records on
foreign aid and arms sales to
Arab countries.
The report said that AIPAC
had instructed pro-Israel
PACs around the country to
contribute money to the
senatorial campaign of Rhode
Island Lt. Gov. Richard Licht.
Licht, who is Jewish, is
challenging the incumbent,
Republican Sen. John Chafee,
who is seen as less sym-
pathetic toward Israel.
Wallace produced a two-
year-old memo that he said
proved AIPAC has been urg-
ing financial support for
Licht, in what he said was
arguably a violation of federal
law prohibiting lobbying
groups from taking part in
partisan politics.
AIPAC has since said the
memo was written by a low-
level staff person. AIPAC also
said it does not have the
power to direct fund-raising
decisions.
AIPAC officials have said
that while the group is pro-
hibited from coordinating the
activities of PACs, it often pro-
vides information at the re-
quest of AIPAC members who
are involved in the political
process.
The report also included
criticism of AIPAC by former
Undersecretary of State
George Ball and one-time
Sen. Charles Percy (R-I11.).
Ball served in the State
Department from 1961 to
1965 and was described by
AIPAC Monday as "a
longtime critic of U.S. policy
toward Israel!'
In the "60 Minutes" report,
Ball called AIPAC's influence
a "corruption of the American
democratic process," without
specifying where AIPAC had
either acted illegally or
unethically.

1110111 <

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Around the World

Continued from preceding page.

LILL

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