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March 10, 1989 - Image 2

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1989-03-10

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PURELY COMMENTARY

Bar-Ilan U. Gains Global Role In USSR Links

Teachers Cathedra supported with
funds set for that purpose as a founda-
tion by Sarah and Morris Friedman of
Southfield. The link is between Bar-
Ilan and the historic Jewish communi-
ty of Vilna, the Lithuanian capital,
whence a noted educator will be in
Israel to perfect her Yiddish teaching
methods. Prof. Winer also announced
this progressive step, stating:

PHILIP' SLOMOVITZ

Editor Emeritus

D

edication of a new Jewish cul-
tural center in Moscow assumed
great cultural significance last
month as a rejection of the previous pre-
judices and as a commencement of a
new era of human educational relations
between Russians and Jews. That
significant event gained a worldwide ac-
claim upon its occurrence.
An accompanying development, the
possibility of introduction of Yiddish
studies in the USSR under the direction
of Bar-Ilan University of Ramat Gan,
Israel, lends equally significant value
to the new development.
A major Israel university link with
the current historic occurrences in the
Soviet Union has just been made known
by Prof. Gershon Winer, dean of the
Yiddish language department of
Bar-Ilan.
Dr. Winer revealed an official letter
to the currently functioning Israel
delegation in Moscow, which was ad-
dressed in care of the Dutch embassy
which represents Israel's interests in
the USSR. The Israel ministry was ask-
ed to issue an official letter regarding
sponsorship of Yiddish studies.
The message from Israel em-
phasizes the readiness by the Israel
university to provide guidance,
material, necessary assistance and per-
sonnel when needed for the proposed
Yiddish programs.

Gershom Winer

Of special interest is the informa-
tion provided by Prof. Winer listing in-
quiries that have reached the Bar-Ilan
Yiddish department from tourists in
the USSR and in written communica-
tions from a number of Russian Jewish
communities asking for assistance in
Yiddish studies.
There is another accomplished
academic link in the Russian-Jewish
scene involving the achievements of the
Bar-Ilan Yiddish department. A major
portion of the latter is the Bar-Ilan

Sarah Lapicki of Vilna
recently visited Israel and ap-
plied for acceptance in the
Moshe and Sarah Friedman
Teacher Training Program. She
will be in attendance for the
academic year 1989/90 beginn-
ing in October and will be retur-
ning to Vilna afterwards to
teach Yiddish in Vilna's public
school system where Yiddish
has recently been introduced
and is offered whenever any
group of parents request it. Miss
Lapicki will be the recipient of
the Harry and Adele Mondry
Memorial Scholarship (of
Detroit), contributed by their
children David and Eugene
Mondry.
This is the first time that a
student from the Soviet Union —
not an immigrant in Israel — but
a resident of the Soviet Union
will be studying in an Israel
university and will be returning
to the Soviet Union.

Prejudice Abandoned,
Justice Restored

R

estoration of cultural rights and
opening of a cultural center and
yeshivah in Moscow was front
page news on a world scale. Eminent
scholars attended its dedication Feb. 22.
Elie Wiesel, who was among the
distinguished personalities at that
event in Moscow, acclaimed it as an
historic event. In a New York Times Op-
Ed Page article, he expressed jubilation
in the presence of Jews expressing pride
in being Jews. He stated:
"Here I am, on a Sunday in
February 1989, participating in a
ceremony marking the opening of a
Jewish cultural center — the first to be
established since the Stalin years — in
the presence of Jews from all over the
world. Things have changed in Miklaerit
Gorbachev's Soviet Union: Jews wl4
want to live as Jews can do so openly
without fear."
The faculty of the restored yeshivah,
in the re-created USSR Jewish cultural
center will be advised by Dr. Min Stein-
saltz, the world famed scholar who is
known for his translation of the Talmud
from Aramaic into modern Hebrew.
It is important to indicate at this
time that two important books by Rab-
bi Adin Steinsaltz have just been
published by Jason Aronson. Their
titles: The Strife of the Spirit and The
Long Shorter Way: Discourses on
Chasidic Thought. ❑

Judges Over Israel

Mounting Indignities

lways judged and constantly
maligned, there is really no-
thing new in another chastise-
ment of Israel. Even the charge against
her in the human rights indictments by
the United States — her only friend —
there is mere repetition in the search
for a villain.
There is a "but" in the charge
against Israel. There was a simple ad-
dition that there is less brutality in the
Jewish case when compared with Korea
and Cuba. The reason for the "but": the
world is expecting more from the
acknowledged and acclaimed Israel
morality. These are not the exact words,
but this is what was meant.
That's a compliment. Of course

for justice the minority must fight
against the majority, the aim always be-
ing to reach a state of justice and decen-
cy among the nations. The diplomats in
such a majority status are always put
to the test.
It would be totally unfair to say that
the indecencies recorded in the U.N.
represent all concerned. Even in the
media where there are leanings towards
applauding the malignment of Israel
there are the nobilities of exceptions. In
the instance of the accusations against
Israel in the human rights bill of guilt
there is an especially pleasing excep-
tion. It is the comment by Jeane
Kirkpatrick, the former U.S. am-
bassador to the United Nations. Under
the Washington Post heading, "An Un-
fair Report on Israel?' Kirkpatrick
discussed the U.S. accusations in
Israel's role, and declared:

A

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
(US PS 275-520) is published every Friday
with additional supplements the fourth
week of March, the fourth week of August
and the second week of November at
20300 Civic Center Drive, Southfield,
Michigan.

Second class postage paid at Southfield,
Michigan and additional mailing offices.

Postmaster: Send changes to:
DETROIT JEWISH NEWS, 20300 Civic
Center Drive, Suite 240, Southfield,
Michigan 48076

$26 per year
$33 per year out of state
60' single copy

Vol. XCV No. 2

2

March 10, 1989

FRIDAY, MARCH 10, 1989

there is morality in the very life of
Israel. Much more needed to be said. It
remains of great importance that
Israel's right to self-defense is para-
mount and unchallengeable. The way
the young defenders of Israel still suf-
fer from the many abuses is not only
deplorable, it is outrageously
humiliating.
That's how "judging" over Israel
has multiplied in diplomatic quarters
with the single rejection, even when it
is only an abstention, of the United
States.
Otherwise there is the continuity of
159 nations ganging up on the Jewish
state, of a vote of 14-1 in the Security
Council of the United Nations and the
diplomatic waving of morality placards
by those who claim to belong to the
humanly democratic forces, yet keep
condemning the defenders of Israel,
with never a word of endorsement of the
"right to life."
Perhaps there is less to complain
about than appears on the surface.
There is the glory of the recognition of
a mark of Jewish self-preservation in
the condemnations leveled against
Israel. There is also the lesson provid-
ed in the treatment accorded the Jew
through the ages: it may be high time
to have learned that we are the
"minority of one?' In such a status we
could nearly always be right and
therefore must realize that in a battle

As The Post observed, it is
"the most critical review of
Israel's control over the ter-
ritories in the 14 years since
Congress began requiring the
annual country-by-country
report:'
The 21 pages devoted to the
discussion of human rights
practices, especially violations,
in Israel were so utterly bizarre-
ly out of proportion compared
to treatment of other countries

— Angola, six pages; Ethiopia,
12 pages; Cuba, 15 pages;
Nicaragua, 14 pages; Panama,
10 pages; Vietnam, 7 pages;
Syria, 10 pages; Egypt, 16 pages;
China, 20 pages; the Soviet
Union, 22 pages — that the result
in inevitably skewed and biased.

Assistant Secretary for
Human Rights Richard Schifter,
an honorable man and a per-
sonal friend, has provided
disclaimers for the careful
reader. The report acknowledg-
ed that "Israel is a parliamen-
tary democracy with a multipar-
ty political system and free elec-
tions?' It noted that since its
founding in 1948 "only one Arab
state, Egypt, has concluded a
peace treaty" with Israel and
observed that several Arab-
Israeli "armed conflicts" con-
tribute to a continuing "sense of
insecurity?'

It took note of the continuing
"civilian unrest" in the occupied
territories and acknowledges
the continued existence of
organized Palestinian efforts to
destroy the state of Israel. It
even mentions the murder by
Palestinians of 13 Palestinians

Continued on Page 42

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