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October 18, 1978 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1978-10-18

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Page 4-Wednesday, October 18, 1978-The Michigan Daily

.be 3irbigau aiI
Eighty-Nine Years of Editorial Freedom
, No. 18 News Phone: 7
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

Begin's flexibility crucial to
Middle East peace settlemen

Vol. IX


Clericals get another chance.

. .

B Y AN AGREEMENT reached yes-
terday with the University,
clerical workers will most likely go to
the polls November 13-17 to decide
whether or not they want tounionize.On
the November ballot will be two
choices for the clericals - accept the
Organizing Committee for Clericals
(OCC) as the recognized union or have
no union at all.
OCC officials are confident that
clericals will vote in favor of
unionization. In order to petition for
this union election, the OCC collected
over 1400 signatures, close to 50 per
cent of all clericals and more than 30
the 30 per cent needed for an election.
We are sure this early show of
support for an election is indicative of
support among the clericals for a union
that will petition their grievances and
bargain with the University for a fair
contract. OCC chairwoman Marianne
Jensen looked on the elections as
"laying the foundation for higher
wages, better benefits and improved
working conditions."
Unfortunately, the former clerical
union, U.A.W. Local 2001, dissolved
after a year and one half when two
very bitter factions developed. One
faction, the clerical for a Democratic
Union (CDU), condemned the
ineffectiveness of the U.A.W. in

negotiations with the University and
therefore worked todisolve Local 2001.
The other faction wanted to maintain
their alliance with the U.A.W. and
charged that CDU members merely
wanted to disband the U.A.W. local
2001 in order to form another union
under the auspices of a different
international union; some said
AFSCME or the Teamsters.
The University is also to blame for
preventing the clericals from having a
union. The University, under the able
guidance of an experienced labor
mediator, President Robben Fleming,
has maintained an anti-union posture;
it has consistently and effectively
promoted factionalism among
fledgling union groups.
But the OCC, to its credit, has
decided not to affiliate with any
international union unless all members
vote democratically. This removes the
major obstacle to a solid and, effective
workers union on this carupus. We
commend OCC for its courage and
determination to overcome devisive
factionalism. When clerical workers
vote on whether to accept OCC or have
no union at all, we believe they can
confidently cast a vote for a union
which would provide them with the
kind of representation needed to
bargain effectively with the

In May, 1977, when Menachem Begin's
Likud party stunningly defeated the ruling
Labor Bloc, Israeli political analysts
predicted immediate catastrophe for the
Jewish state. A fifth full-scale war in just 30
years with the Arab confrontation states
seemed imminent.
Begin, warned Israelis from all ranks and
classes, was a right-wing ideologue obsessed
with expansionist policies. No treaties. He
would be impossible to negotiate with. &~o
concessions. No treaties. Not one single inch
of the occupied West Bank would be returned
to the Arabs. No peace. Just another cirsis.
Although American officials publicly
congratulated Mr. Begin, many of them
privately expressed fears that Begin would
stall any momentum toward a peace settle-
ment. After all, they reasoned, if concesions
were difficult to achieve from the comparably
moderate Rabin government, then they would
be impossible to get from Mr. Begin and his
Many Israelis, in turn, were worried that
Begin's policies would alienate America's
Jews from supporting the Jewish state. This
possible weakening of the common bond,
some suggested, might eventually lead the
U.S. government to adopt a moreteven-
handed approach to Israel. Without the
nation's Jews lobbying and using its votes as
"political blackmail", the Carter
Administration could assume the most
pragmatic and beneficial Mideast foreign
policy,rwhich could mean lessening its ties
with Israel.
And what about the Arabs? The Syrians,
Jordanians, and the remainder of the Arab
League seized the opportunity to unleash a
typical propaganda attack, arguing Begin's
selection proves that the Israeli citizenry
prefers confrontation and imperialism over
All seemed lost. All the past American
peace efforts, accelerated by the Carter
Administration, seemed futile. The slim
thread of peace was cut abruptly on that day
in May and nobody had an idea on how to
regain it.
Begin's first fewweeks in office certainly
didn't change anyone's opinion. He proudly
announced that Jewish settlers have a
"biblical right to settle in Judaia and
Summaria (ancient names for the West Bank
and Gaza Strip). "He said he would never
give up East Jerusalem and never negotiate
with the Palestinian Liberation Organization
(PLO). He stepped up settlements in the
occupied territories and brushed away any
American pressure tactics. And he refused to
affirm the rights of the Palestinians.


But now, just 17 months later, Begin the
expansionist has provided Israel with its first
opportunity for peace in 30 years. On the eve
of an Arab-Israeli peace settlement, Begin
has defied the experts and hir harsh critics. In
effect, he has almost switched sides in the
internal Israeli political scene, collecting a
new bloc of supporters and alienating his
former friends. He has transferred peace
from a dream into a possibility.
In switching his course, the former freedom
fighter has agreed to Palestinian autonomy in
the occupied territories, although he insists
on keeping Israeli troops in the enclaves to
insure against a possible terrorist attack.

... Begin the expansion-
ist has provided Israel with
its first real opportunity for
peace in 30 years. On the
eve of an Arab-Israel peace
settlement, Begin has defied
the experts and his harsh
Furthermore, he has persuaded the Israeli
Parliament to vote for the removal of Jewish
settlers from the Sinai penninsula, and
declared a freeze on any additional
settlements in the West Bank and Gaza until
negotiations with Egypt conclude.
There are many observers from all three
sides who argue, and rightfully so, that Mr.
Begin is just capitalizing on an excellent
chance for peace, made possible by Anwar
Sadat's trip to Jerusalem last November, and
that his ideological commitments remain the
Nevertheless, it must be an enormously
difficult and painful decision for the Israeli
leader to make: He has had to choose between

a chance for peace and the ideas which he ha
maintained and fought strongly for ever sinc
his youth in Poland.
Since his immigration to Palestine in ith
late 1930s, Begin has constantly been the ma
in opposition which employed violent tactic
to liberate the Jews from British occupatio
during the second World war.
At that time, the main thrust of Jewis
opposition to the British was a more moderat
organization called the Haganah. it was thi
Haganah, and not the Irgun, which possesse
most of the resources and received the mo
aid. But Begin and his followers would n
relent on their goal to liberate Palestine.
After the establishment of the Jewish stat
in 1948, Begin stayed in opposition
Throughout the next 29 years while the Labo
government ruled the government, Begi
continually attacked them, calling for mor
extreme measures to deal with th
neighboring Arabs to solve the cruci
domestic issues.
The former freedom fighter received th
cooperation of Israel's ultra-nationalist blo
the Gush Emunim, who still strive t
establish settlements in the occupie
territories because they believe it is the Jews
biblical right to occupy the land..
And finally, at the age of 64, he won power
Those policies of expansionism and hard-Tin
ideology could not be implemented.
But now they believe he has let them doWn
By reverting from the goal of increasin
settlements in the West Bank, Begin has le~
the ranks of former Irgun members and Gus
believers for the more dovish circle.
Through the post-Camp David euphori
Begin has had to listen to the cries and plea
of his former allies and close friends.,
cabinet member has resigned. A parliame
member and former Irgun officials screame
at the prime minister, complaining he lia
betrayed his nation by signing the Cain
David agreement.
And to further his agony, Begin has had t
order the srmy to evacuate settlers who ar
* trying to build additional settlements in th
West Bank and ignoring the government
imposed freze.
He must be proud when he considers that h
may be remembered as the man wh
established peace, but he must feel ashamle.
every time one of his former allies denounee
the government.
It has been a tough decision, one he had t
make. When outside observers criticize Begi
for his intransigence, one must consider ho
far he has really gone and how hard it ha
Michael A rkush is a Daily Day Editor

** And GEOdoesto

A RAY OF HOPE blinked down on
another campus labor conflict
recently. Regent James Waters (D-
Muskegon) said he may present fellow
regents with a proposal to drop the
University's case against the Graduate
Employees Organization (GEO).
University administrators, after
recognizing GEO as the bargaining
agent for graduate teaching and
research assistants for several years,
did an about face in August, 1977. In
response to a GEO unfair -labor
practices complaint before the
Michigan Employment Relations
Commission (MERC), the
administration filed a claim that
graduate workers are primarily
students, not employees entitled to
collective bargaining rights.
As a result of the University's claim,
graduate employees have been
working without a contract since the
expiration of the first and only GEO
contract, signed after a strike in 1975.
The administration's apparent
strategy in dealing with GEO has been
to stall at every turn, to avoid entering
into good faith contract bargaining,
and to exploit every possible internal
weakness of the union. In other words,
the administration has treated GEO
like it treats the rest of the campus
labor - like a bitter enemy, rather
than a vital component of the campus
Against GEO, administrators have

been measurably successful. The
graduate union has suffered from
some serious significant weaknesses,
and, from the beginning, faced the
problem of establishing support from a
highly transient constituency. Each
year, a new batch of teaching
assistants needs to be convinced of the
advantages of unionization and
membership in GEO.
Also, the tendency towards
factionalism, and endless debate over
relatively minor policy issues, has
often cropped up at GEO meetings,
sapping the union's energy.
Because of University
management's 1977 action challenging
GEO's union status, most, present
graduate employees have never
worked under a union contract.
GEO membership, meanwhile, has
fallen to only a few hundred people, out
of a few thousand eligible graduate
workers. Unable to show tangible
benefits of union membership, and
deprived of any check-off dues
collection system, GEO has had great
difficulty in convincing its constituents
to sign up.
A regent's decision to drop the
University's case against GEO would
be a big step in the right direction. The
next, more important step would be for
the board to direct administrators to
adopt a good faith bargaining posture,
rather than a no-holds-barred anti-
labor approach, in dealing with
University workers.

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_ _ _

Letters to the Daily

Lebanon editorial
To the Daily,
Your editorial of 10/11 reached
a new "high" in the field of
misleading and irresponsible
journalism. Though it reads well,
this journalistic endeavor is filled
with a great number of statemen-
ts that at best represent political
naivite, and at worst, downright
Your contention that Syria is
"irresponsible" in her actions is
indeed commendable. I would
oppose, all things considered,
that the measure of thousands of
innocent civilians is irrespon-
sible, yet from here all is down
hill. The statement that "Israel
. . . (has) no business in
Lebanon" is inherently false.

that item which the U.S. gover-
nment so lacks in its dealings
with South Africa.)
The editorial also cites the "in-
ternational community" as a
potential factor in Israeli policy
decisions. Unfortunately, the
Jewish state recognizes the true
character of the "international
community" and gives it its
proper due. After the Arab
aggression of 1973, all of Black
Africa severed diplomatic
relations with Israel, and the
Europens, with the notable ex-
ception of Holland, caved in to the
oil shieks (after all, oil is more
important than a few Jews). And
no Israeli will forget that black
day when the U.S. equated
zionism, the international
liberation movement of the Jews,
with racism. For Israel, the "in-
ternational community" is a far-

"illegal and false" (Article 17)
and vows its eventual
"liberation" (Articles 12-16). The,
statement that Syria, Jordan, et.
al. reject Camp David because of
the Palestinian problem is an ut-
ter falsehood. It must be remem-
bered that the Arabs had Gaza,
Judea, Samaria and the Golan for
19 years, the evidence of their ef-
forts on behalf of their
Palestinian Arab brothers is
Israel of 1978 is not
Czechoslovakia of 1938, she won't
allow herself to be reomobed. A
state with a border 8 miles wide is
hardly a state, thus here are the
facts: Israel will not withdraw to
pre-1967 boundaries, a unified
Jerusalem will be her capital,
and despite the Arabs, the
Russians, the Europeans, the
Americans and even the Daily,
Tsrarm wil liv

graduate students, who feel that
the loss of professor Samoff's
teaching, research and extra
curricular activities is a loss not
only to political science students
but to the University at large, hve
organized themselves into a
student support committee. Their
protest before and during th
ceremony was aimed at directin
the attention of all those involved
to another piece of evidence that
does not square with the politica
science department's tenur
denial decision. Another unit of
the University of Michigan's
academic community has found
professor Samoff's contributions
valuable enough to deserve the
distinguished service award. # A
segment of Samoff's citation
reads, "The important inter-
national reputation you have
achieved in the fields of African
politics and political economy is

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