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April 02, 1993 - Image 112

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1993-04-02

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

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IN THE

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Peace Now Joins
Umbrella Group

New York (JTA) — Ameri-
cans for Peace Now was ac-
cepted as a new member of
the Conference of Presidents
of Major American Jewish
Organizations, culminating
weeks of unprecedented
lobbying on both sides of the
issue.
The closely watched vote,
which came after two hours
of late-afternoon debate, was
27-10, with eight absten-
tions. Another two of the
member groups present did
not cast ballots.
The Conference of Presi-
dents also voted to grant full
membership to the Council
of Jewish Federations,
which formerly had only
observer status.
For Peace Now, admission
to organized American
Jewry's premier umbrella
grouping caps a meteoric
rise to respectability from
the dovish movement's more
humble grass-roots origins.
That process began last
summer with the elevation
of some of the movement's
leaders in Israel to posts in
the new Labor government.
And in the United States,
several of Peace Now's
leaders are either members
of the Clinton administra-
tion or have considerable in-
fluence with it.
"This vote recognizes the
American Jewish commun-
ity's commitment to inclu-
sion of all pro-Israel voices,"
Gail Pressberg, APN's pres-
ident and chief executive of-
ficer, said in a statement

issued immediately after the
vote.
"We look forward to work-
ing with our colleagues in
the conference on issues of
concern to Israel," added
Letty Cottin Pogrebin, the
group's chairperson.
There was no immediate
reaction from groups oppos-
ing APN's admission. That
campaign was led by the
Zionist Organization of
America, which had charged
that APN's views were out-
side the Jewish community's
consensus.
Paul Flacks, ZOA's ex-
ecutive vice president, had
argued prior to the vote that
"for the Conference of Presi-
dents to give legitimacy to
an organization that has for
a long time advocated" that
the Palestine Liberation
Organization is an accep-
table negotiating partner for
Israel would "undermine
Israel's negotiating position
and show a weakness of the
community's support for
Israel."
But those supporting
APN's entry, including the
Anti- Defamation League
and the American Jewish
Congress, maintained that
the Jewish community's
umbrella should be wide
enough to cover a group that
strongly supports Israel and
whose dovish positions are
supported both in the
government corridors in
Jerusalem and a significant
portion of American Jewish
public opinion.

Woman Survives
Palestinian's Attack

Tel Aviv (JTA) — A 36-year-
old woman who warded off
an attack by a Palestinian
who tried to strangle her
said from her hospital room
that she survived by hitting
her assailant with a metal
garbage bin.
Sophie Porat, a mother of
four children, said she was
attacked by a masked man
as she took out the garbage
from her quiet north Tel
Aviv home.
Mrs. Porat described what
happened when she went
down to put her trash in the
ground-floor disposal bins.
"Suddenly I heard a
scream, `Allahu Akbar' (God
is Great), and felt a man's

hands around by neck, chok-
ing me," she said.
"I was born in Lebanon
and speak fluent Arabic. I
have often thought about
what I would do if attacked
by a terrorist and instinc-
tively I managed to say in
Arabic 'What are you doing?
I am an Arab, not a Jew.'
"But that had no effect,
and I grabbed a metal gar-
bage can and jabbed it at my
assailant," she said.
"He released his grip, and
I rushed through a back door
and knocked on my
neighbor's door. She took me
in and phoned the police and
called an ambulance, - she
said.

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