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August 25, 1995 - Image 8

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1995-08-25

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

Take
minu
learn

BEIJING page 8

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LLJ

8

"Most people are
going for the
excitement of it."

— Fern Katz

"What we will be is a presence
right in their face, and this will
benefit Chinese women," she
said.
Ms. Lipner agrees.
"Just having 20-, 30- or 40,000
women in Beijing walking
around, talking to people, means
we'll be talking not just to the
women at the conference but to
women we encounter in the
streets, stores and restaurants,"
she said. "The woman who's
cleaning the toilets in the big ho-
tel is going to know we've come
there to support her issue, and
whether or not she's lucky
enough to be a member of the
Chinese delegation to the NGO
becomes almost irrelevant." [i]

•SR

V-3- e•

LLJ

infant mortality rate and the gap
between rich and poor has
widened," she said. "I've learned
that when women are empow-
ered, the mortality rate drops and
everybody's standard of living ris-
es."
At the request of the U.N.'s
Human Rights Watch, Ms. Katz
won't be handing out politically
provocative material in China nor
advocating on behalf of Harry
Wu, a Chinese dissident who ear-
lier this year was arrested by the
Chinese government when he re-
entered the country from the
United States.

407, It ...a,

340

C/3

daughter, and a daughter-in-law.
She remembers local women
coming by donkey along dusty vil-
lage roads to reach the third U.N.
Conference on Women 10 years
ago in Nairobi. They slept wher-
ever they could, she said.
"I had such a wonderful and
enlightening experience in
Nairobi. I'm also going because
I'd like to experience it through
their eyes and to inspire and mo-
tivate some of the younger worn-
en, and I don't know two better
than these," she said.
Ms. Davis, 58, is going to China
as a representative of the
Michigan Jewish AIDS Coalition,
but she admits that her daily
meetings in Nairobi with mem-
bers of the international Jewish
women's community, some from
as far away as Iceland, lured her
to the Far East.
For Ms. Katz, planning for the
trip meant getting her "bicycle
legs" ready for sightseeing, pack-
ing clothes for hot, dry weather
and, of course, transforming some
of the NCJW's programs to lob-
by-worthy issues so they can be
included in the platform for ac-
tion.
But she isn't limiting herself
to a narrow set of issues.
As a member of Women's
Action for New Directions, her
concerns include high infant mor-
tality rates and poverty among
women in the United States. At
the very least, those issues will
get an airing on a global level in
China.
"Our country has a dismal
record on handling women in
poverty. I consider it a crime that
working people can't get medical
insurance, we have a very high

Call 810-354-7123, ext. 333 todayto begin

receiving your very own Jewish News.

President Berates
Poland's Lech Walesa

New York (JTA) — In a letter to
the World Jewish Congress, Pres-
ident Clinton has berated Polish
President Lech Walesa for tak-
ing too long to condemn anti-
Semitism following offensive
remarks made by his Catholic
priest.
"I find Father [Henryk]
Jankowski's words to be vile and
deplorable," the president wrote
to Edgar Bronfman, WJC presi-
dent.
"I was disheartened by the
length of time it took President
Walesa to issue a reaction con-
demning anti-Semitism."
In a June sermon that Mr.
Walesa attended, Mr. Jankows-
ki blamed the Jews for starting
World War II and equated the
Jewish Star of David with the

Nazi swastika and the Commu-
nist hammer and sickle.
Mr. Jankowski later said,
"Like all other people, Jews hap-
pen to do unbecoming things in
public life just as they happen to
do very noble things indeed. I am
talking chiefly about banking and
finance circles."
After a week of silence, public
pressure both at home and
abroad forced Mr. Walesa to is-
sue a statement saying that "anti-
Semitism [is] despicable" and
that he would not tolerate it.
In his statement, Mr. Walesa
reiterated his respect for Jews
and distanced himself from his
former Solidarity union ally. But
he fell short of satisfying his crit-
ics by not condemning Jankows-
ki directly.

(

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