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July 25, 2003 - Image 6

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-07-25

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LETTERS

We prefer letters that relate to articles in the Jewish News. We reserve the right to
edit or reject letters. Brevity is encouraged. Letter writers generally are limited to
one letter per 4-6 week period, space permitting.
Letters must contain the name, address and title of the writer, and a daytime
telephone number. Original copies must be hand signed. Mail to the Jewish News
at 29200 Northwestern Hwy., Suite 110, Southfield, MI 48034;
fax to (248) 304-8885; or e-mail to: rsklar@thejewishnevvs.com

for our brave sisters and brothers in
Israel. Wherever we went, they
thanked us for being there. They feel
isolated and lonely because of all the
terrorist attacks. It means a great deal
How ironic that the Jewish News
to them to see American Jews visit
should write about Rabbi Sherwin
them and tell them that we stand by
Wine and Humanistic Judaism ("The
them. Despite the difficult economic
Power Of Man," July 4, page 37) in
situation, they are trying to go on
the issue corresponding with the
with their lives the best they can.
weekly Torah portion, "Shabbat
They will not let terror defeat them.
Korach."
We were briefed by a number of
Like Rabbi Wine, Korach was also
high
government officials. They are
charismatic, brilliant and learned —
very
cautiously optimistic that the
and denied the existence of God.
new
Palestinian
prime minister,
Korach's fate, however, was not pleas-
Mahmoud Abbas, will have a different
ant. He was literally swallowed up by
agenda than Palestinian Authority
the Earth along with all of his follow-
President Yasser Arafat and that they
ers and their possessions.
will
disarm the terrorist organizations.
I am not suggesting, God forbid,
Some
said that it would be a miracle
that Rabbi Wine and his congregants
if
real
peace
can be achieved at this
be swallowed up. I am only making a
time
because
the Palestinian leadership
comparison.
has not been capable until now to rec-
Are the Humanistic Jews of today,
ognize the existence of Israel and stop
like those who followed Korach, mov-
teaching their young people the deep
ing inexorably down the wrong spiri-
hatred for Israel.
tual path?
We not only highly recommend,
Aviva Masha
Oak Park but we think that it is the duty of
Detroit Jewry to visit Israel. We urge
everyone to sign up for Federation's
Michigan Miracle Mission 4 to Israel
next April 18-28. Contact mission
director Sally Krugel: (248) 203-1485
or krugel@jfmd.org
We guarantee that you will have the
When I was first exposed to Sherwin
same exhilarating feeling and satisfac-
Wine, the only religious institution
tion that we have experienced.
where I felt comfortable was the
David Kahan
Unitarian Church.
Steve Victor
I joined the Birmingham Temple
Jay Victor
and later my husband, who spoke
Bloomfield Hills
Yiddish and had been raised as a secu-
lar Jew, also joined. Our children have
both attended learning institutions in
Israel and strongly identify as Jews —
one theist and one humanist.
It is untrue to say that Sherwin
Wine tries to convince people there is
Regarding Dr. Rafael Medoff's Special
no God. But for those whose belief
Commentary on Harry Truman
system is already firmly non-theistic,
("Harry Truman, Anti-Semite?" July
Humanistic Judaism provides a possi-
18, page 29): There was a British
ble Jewish alternative.
naval blockade preventing arms and
Carol Schwartz
Farmington Jews from reaching Palestine while
allowing a steady stream of Arabs
from Arab states.
In January 1948, an American
embargo on all arms to the Middle
East was added to the blockage of
Jews. The collapse of United States
support for Jewish independence
We recently came back from the most
stemmed from the traditional policy
wonderful and exciting week in Israel,
of the State Department that the
a trip sponsored by American Israel
Arabs must be appeased because of
Public Affairs Committee.
their oil resources vital to American
We are trying to find the appropri-
defense and to the profits of the
ate words to describe the wonderful
American oil companies.
feeling we had showing our support
Even after Truman's declaration of

Humanistic Jews'
Problematic Course

Temple Provides
Jewish Alternative

Truman And
Jews Revisited

Visit Israel On
Miracle Mission

7/25

2003

6

America's recognition of Israel,
America continued its embargo of all
arms to the Jewish state. And even
after the Arab armies invaded to
destroy the new Jewish state, Truman
made it a crime for any American to
supply weapons to the Jews so they
could defend themselves.
Arab armies captured Judea and
Samaria; they renamed the West Bank
and Jerusalem's Old City and its
Temple Mount, massacred 6,200 Jews
and evicted all Jews who survived in
biblical holy Jewish homeland. The
Arabs occupied a third of the 40-mile
wide Israel, the Jordan River to the
Mediterranean Sea.
It was Adolph W. Schwimmer, an
American citizen, who ran a secret and
illegal American-based network that
helped smuggle the weapons to secure
Israel's survival and independence in
1948, for which he was convicted by
the Truman administration. Besides
weapons from America, Schwimmer
was able to bring in weapons to Israel
from Europe.
Arab armies had surrounded Tel
Aviv, ready to finish off Israel. But
there were five Israel fighter planes,
day and night attacking those Arab
invaders — and finally driving them
away — saving Israel. Mr. Schwimmer
had brought in to Israel those planes
from Europe.
It was President Clinton who par-
doned Mr. Schwimmer of Tel Aviv,
then 83 years old, for his 1948
"American crime" of saving Jews and
Israel.
Hymie Cutler

director, Michigan Committee
for a Safe Israel
Detroit

Survivors' Program
Needs Support

As your editorial explained ("Helping
Them Cope," July 11, page 25), the
Program for Holocaust Survivors and
Families is at a crucial crossroads due
to recent budget cuts at the DMC-
Sinai Hospital.
Survivors have already suffered too
many losses. This is a critical time in
their lives. Each survivor's ability to
cope with the challenges of aging,
health problems, the loss of loved
ones, as well as intensified anxieties
related to terrorism in Israel and the
United States, are further complicated
by the suffering, loss and deprivations
they experienced during the
Holocaust.

Our program provides psychosocial
and emotional support to aging
Jewish Holocaust survivors and their
families using traditional as well as
non-traditional methods.
The program is grateful for its new
home at the Jewish Home & Aging
Services, which is providing in-kind
support but no direct funding. A one-
year Jewish Fund grant has provided
funding for a part-time development
staff member, and we are also pleased
to announce the receipt of a one-year
grant from the Jewish Women's
Foundation of Metropolitan Detroit.
Although we are deeply appreciative
of the assistance that we have received
during this transitional period, ongo-
ing funding is vital. We recognize
there are many avenues we need to
explore to ensure the success of the
program. Anyone interested in sup-
porting the program or learning about
its service can call (248) 661-2999.
This generation represents an over-
whelming and tragic experience in
Jewish as well as world history. The
necessity of providing ongoing care to
those scarred by the Holocaust experi-
ence is obvious. All too quickly these
ranks are diminishing. Those still with
us need our care and devotion even
more. We appreciate the support of
the Jewish News.
Charles Silow

director, Program for Holocaust
Survivors and Families
Jewish Home & Aging Services
West Bloomfield

San-El Gives
Israel Boost

I am always inspired by the articles
about and letters from readers who
have visited Israel ("Taming The
Thrill Ride," June 20, page 28). But
for those who yearn to serve Israel,
may I suggest an alternative venue.
In May, I and several new Detroit-
area companions participated in the
Sar-El-Volunteers in Service to Israel
program.We went from the plane to
BATZAP, a large electronics and
communications base near Ramle.
Our tasks involved repairing and
preparing radio equipment, antennas,
and communication devices for heli-
copters, tanks and other ground vehi-
cles. No five-star hotels, no photo-
ops, no famous Israel breakfasts. Just
hard work, outdoor showers and a cot
in a trailer barracks.
But living and working alongside
Israel's beautiful young soldiers and

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