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February 01, 1991 - Image 1

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1991-02-01

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FEBRUARY 1, 1991 1 17 SHEVAT 5751

3,000 At Rally Wave TWo Flags
In Support Of The U.S. And Israel


anice Goldfein looked
around the crowded
Shaarey Zedek lobby,
found the table she was in
search of and headed right to
The table belonged to the
Israel Program Center. And
there, Mrs. Goldfein, a social
worker from Southfield, vol-
unteered to go to Israel and
do, in her words, "anything."
Avi Zechory, formerly of
Tel Aviv, now a Southfield
veterinarian, came because
he just wanted to be near
other Jews. The bombed-out
parts of Tel Aviv that he had
seen earlier on television
were roughly two kilometers
from his home there.
Allen Olender carried a
home-made sign comparing
Hitler and Saddam Hussein.
His wife, Amy, waved a full-
sized American flag. The
couple traveled all over


Detroit's Jewish community showed its support for Israel and the U.S. as over 3,000 attended Sunday's rally.

Even With All The Threats
Life Goes On In Israel



o one wants to be in-
vited to the sixth-
floor parties these
days, though guests have in-
cluded Zubin Mehta and
Jackie Mason.
The guests convene
whenever the sirens begin to
wail. At the sound, guests at
the Tel Aviv Hilton grab
their gas masks and run to a
sixth-floor room at the hotel.
There, waiting in the com-
fort of a crowd, they watch
television for news of the
latest Iraqi attack.
"We call them our
`fabulous sixth-floor shelter
parties,' " said Wilbert
Simkovitz of Oak Park, who
has been in Israel for the
past several months.
In this second week of war,
Mr. Simkovitz and other
Detroiters in Israel say they
have become accustomed to
the unusual — living amid
Iraqi attacks — though they
have not been lulled into a
false sense of security.
"There's apprehension,
and we don't go out in the
evening," said Mr.
Simkovitz. "But we still go
about our business."

The U.S. government sent
Mr. Simkovitz to Israel,
where he is working with
the Israel Defense Forces.
His day begins at an IDF
base, where morale is "very,
very high.
In the evening, Mr.
Simkovitz returns to the
Hilton Hotel, where most of
the news media have set up
headquarters. During the
first Iraqi attack, reporters
interviewed New York
Philharmonic Conductor
Zubin Mehta. Jackie Mason
— not bothering to wear a
gas mask — was also there,
"kibbitzing and joking," Mr.
Simkovitz said.
Just as disturbing as the
Scud missiles is the idea that
the United States may push
Israel into an international
conference — an idea sug-
gested this week by Secre-
tary of State James Baker,
he said.
"It's ridiculous," Detroiter
Michael Neuvirth said of the
linkage proposal. "What
right do the Russians or the
French or the Chinese have
telling Israel what to do?"

Mr. Neuvirth, who has
been in Jerusalem on busi-
ness since mid-December,
said he considers Middle

East politics as he sits "with
my gas mask on in a small
room in a tiny country. If we
had a pro-Iraq (Palestinian)
state, armed with missiles,
in the West Bank, we would
all be dead."
Added Uri Bar-Ner, Con-
sul General of the Israeli
Consulate in Chicago, "It is
clear today that the most
critical problem in the Mid-
dle East is the Arab threat
against Israel's existence.
The more this threat is
removed the better are the
chances for Israel to make
peace with the Arab states
and the Palestinians."
David Gad-Harf, executive
director of the Jewish Com-
munity Council, said talk of
an international conference
is nothing new. He said the
joint statement is an at-
tempt to remind Saddam
Hussein that a quick end to
the war is really in his
"The U.S. has always in-
dicated it has and will con-
tinue to seek resolutions of
other disputes in the Middle
East, including the Palestin-
ian issue. The resolution
says nothing specific. It
doesn't represent a formal
linking of the Palestinian
issue and the Gulf war."

Detroit trying to find a flag
for just this moment.
On the bimah, where hun-
dreds of times before Rabbi
Irwin Groner taught his
congregation about holidays,
Jewish heroes and the
Torah, he now was teaching
about Amalek, the ancient
scourge of the Jewish people
who murdered innocent wo-
men and children. Any com-

Weird War


parison of Amalek to Hus-
sein was difficult to avoid.
"The time when Jews are
beaten and attacked and do
not respond, that time in
history is gone," Rabbi
Groner said.
These were among the
many public and private
moments that made up last
Continued on Page 15

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