100%

Scanned image of the page. Keyboard directions: use + to zoom in, - to zoom out, arrow keys to pan inside the viewer.

Page Options

Download this Issue

Share

Something wrong?

Something wrong with this page? Report problem.

Rights / Permissions

This collection, digitized in collaboration with the Michigan Daily and the Board for Student Publications, contains materials that are protected by copyright law. Access to these materials is provided for non-profit educational and research purposes. If you use an item from this collection, it is your responsibility to consider the work's copyright status and obtain any required permission.

March 15, 1980 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1980-03-15

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

Fge 4-Saturday, March 15, 1980-The Michigan Daily
Carter's gutless U.N. disavowal retards peace

I

With the White House disavowal last week of
the American vote in the U.N. to condemn new
Israeli settlements on Arab land, the power of a
special interest lobby has never been more ap-
parent. It displays the political weakness of
President Carter and his vulnerability in the
upcoming primaries. Had the White House
disavowal come the day after the vote, it might
be acceptable to dismiss it as a niistake. But
in coming more than two days later, and af-
ter a State Department affirmation, Carter's
reneging is a clear manifestation of his no-guts
pragmatism.
The Security Council vote was not, as many
view it, a vote to undermine the security of
Israel. Rather, it was a vote of conscience to
condemn the building of new settlements on
Arab land, which was declared off-limits by the
Israrli Supreme Court last October because the
presence of settlements there constituted a
"provocative action." Carter, however, was
afraid of being perceived as an anti-Zionist and
anti-Semite by the vote, so he ordered
Secretary of State Cyrus Vance to shoulder the
blame for the "mistake."
WITH THE NEW York primary coming up
soon, Carter was anxious about losing the
Jewish vote, which constitutes a large part of
the registered vote in New York. By reneging
as he did, he did not get himself out of hot water
with the Ziuonists, rather, he is only into more
hot water with non-Zionists. Carter, like many
supporters of Israel, refused to allow a distin-
ction to be made between Zionism and
Judasim-which labels as anti-Semitic anyone
who dares to question the prudence of any
Israeli policy.
The Begin Government's policy of building
new settlements on Arab land is a clear in-

dication of the expansionist aims of that gover-
nment. By further encroaching on Arab lands,
as was done earlier this week with the seizure
of another 1100 acres near Jerusalem, the
Begin government is undermining the image of
Israel as a peace-seeking partner of the Camp
David agreement, and is testing the willingness
of Sadat to ignore this slap in the face.
As long as Israel persists in systematically
robbing Arabs of their land through ex-
propriation, water piracy, and direct shelling
on civilian areas, the Camp David agreement
will be meaningless. It is disturbing to see
Zionist supporters smugly pat themselves on
the back for the "accomplishments" of Camp
David.
T;HE ONLY ONE who has claim to any ac-
complishments in Camp David is Anwar Sadat.
His unprecedented gesture of going to
Jerusalem has yet to be reciprocated. The per-
petuatign of illegal settlements is pushing
Sadat td the limit of his bargaining power and
is making it increasingly difficult for him to
maintain his position.
If the May 26 deadline passes with no
significant changes in Israeli policy toward the.
Palestinians, Sadat may have no choice but to
abandon the Camp David agreements. He has
bravely faced the ostracism of the Arab world
for more than two years now, with no sign of
reciprocation from Israel. Giving up parts of
an uninhabitable desert can hardly be called
meaningful, especially in light of the bombing
of refugee camps in South Lebanon, diverting
water from Arab farming areas in Gaza and
the West Bank, and the expropriation of land.
By disavowing the Security Council vote,
Carter has tacitly endorsed the oppressive and
expansionist policies of Israel, purportedly to

By H. Scott Prosterman
strengthen his domestic position. His
vacillation on the settlements issue makes as
much sense as his attempt to fight inflation by
increasing military spending-a tactic which I
doubt even Milton Friedman is buying.
IT IS MOST unfortunate that many
Americans refuse to accept anything as fact
unless they read it in Time. Newsweek, or The
New York Times. It is equally unfortunate that
we can hear some of the most critical infor-
mation about political developments only from
independent researchers, such as Frederick
Jameson and Sheila Ryan, who conduct their
own fact-finding investigations. We dismiss the
findings of these people too easily because they
contradict the more easily digested reports of
the news media.

Because Israel has squandered many oppor-
tunities to solve the Palestinian issue, we might
ask if Israel really does want peace, or if it is
seeking to continue to profit from the state of
"no war-no peace." Without the element of
crisis, aid from the American government and .
private citizens would be drastically
diminished. One critic of my last article on this
page has stated that "some influential Isrealis
feel quite comfortable with the present status
quo." Given that the status quo keeps the
Palestinian people in a state of destitution, and
'maintains an atmosphere by which Israel
maximizes its profits from American military
and economic aid, this statement is easy to
believe.
Not all of the problems of the Middle East
will be eradicated by resolving the Palestinian
issue. But it is absurd to deny that the

Palestinians are at the center of the Arab-
Israeli dispute.
THE PLO, ALONG with the rest of the world,
has seen how Israel has failed to answer the
overtures of Sadat, and how he has been
politically humiliated by Israel's continued op-
pression of the Palestinians. Israel has given
no sign of offering anything in return and is
only party with the power to use carrots and
sticks. The Palestinians have nothing.
Zionists pay lip-service to the need to address
the Palestinian issue in a way that arrogantly
brushes aside their plight. When the issue is
addressed, they make angry attempts to
defend Israeli policy with emotional value
judgments that convey feelings of racism
toward the Palestinian people, andthey
dismiss serious attempts to address the
problem as "tendencies toward emotional
bias."
Until the Palestinian issue is addressed by
Israel and the United States, Camp David will
keep Americans and Israelis blind to their own
folly, and increase the destructiveness of the
eventual explosioi.
Contrary to what some readers have read in-
to my statements, I have never advocated the
destruction of Israel. But it is becoming more
obvious that if radical changes are not made
very soon in Zionist policies toward the
Palestinians, thest policies will be the impetus
of Israel's own self-destruction.
H. Scott Prosterman says he is a mean
and ornery graduate student in the Center
for Near East and North African Studies,
just as many readers have imagined.

AP Photo
MANY BELIEVE PRESIDENT Carter should not have disallowed the now-famous United
Nations Security Council resolution regarding Israeli settlements on the West Bank.

t I

N

Ninet v Years of Editorial Freedom

LETTERS TO THE DAILY:
NORML hits drug equipment stance

6

Vol. XC, No. 129

News Phone: 764-0552

- Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

Skepticism
T IME WAS, WHEN the labels of
"national security" and "national
defense" were enough to make many
Americans unquestioningly set aside
any personal reservations about a
government project or policy in favor
of the putative national effort. Little
protest was raised in the West when
dangerous tests were first begun.
But the carelessness of the military
with regard to nuclear testing in the
1950s apparently raised the incidence
of cancer in Nevada and 'Utah. The
inhabitants of those states have not
forgotten that, and this time around,
have greeted the government's defen-
,se, plans with a healthy measure of
skepticism.
The MX intercontinental ballistic

over the MX
missile system, a planned network of
underground launchers linked by
10,000 miles of railroad track, has
caused concern among the residents of
these same two states. They worry that
the system will make their homes a
likely target for Soviet missiles. En-
vironmental dangers are also a con-
cern.
The MX opponents who have been
turning out at government hearings
and forums on the MX are not just the
same protestors who align themselves
with most liberal causes. They are
grizzled miners and ranchers who are
quite unaccustomed to the strains of
"We Shall Overcome." It's en-
couraging to see the grass roots
resisting Big Brother's inposing foot-
steps.

To the Daily:
We are a little surprised that
the Daily would take such a dim
viewof HB 5542 and one of its co-
sponsors, Perry Bullard. I guess
you better sharpen your pencils
for an editorial shot at Michigan
NORML (National Organization
for the Reform of Marijuana
Laws) as well, because we also
supportRepresentative Richard
Fitzpatrick's proposal to ban the
sale of smoking materials and
smoking devices to minors. While
we would much prefer to see its
age limit setat eighteen, and will
do what we can to see that it is,
we otherwise find the bill a
reasonable and constitutionally
sound attempt to discourage
smoking by minors.
It was not clear from your
editorial that anyone at the Daily
has actually read the bill, or
given it much consideration to
what prompts its introduction.
The Daily is certainly entitled to
its opinions, but you don't seem to
realize that the state does have
the right to limit the accessability
of certain substances or items to,.
minors that it must allow to
adults-this is true not only of
recreational substances, but of
automobiles, explosives and
firearms, and sexually oriented
material. No one in their right
mind would encourage a minor to
smoke any recreational substan-
ce. Nevertheless, beyond volun-
tary efforts of retailers them-
selves, we see no attempts to en-
force Michigan's conflicting

tobacco statutes. HB 5542 would
require enforcement to prevent
tobacco sales to minors and we
welcome the effort.
Another bill which sets this bill
apart from similar legislation is
its precise definition of "smoking
paraphernalia." Several states
and hundreds of .local gover-
nments have attempted to com-
pletely ban sale of all "parapher-
nalia" and in some cases even
literature, regardless of a per-
son's age. Because of their
vagueness and overbreadth,
these attempts have uniformly
violatedconstitutional due
process protections. A November
1979 Library of Congress report
on such legislation succinctly
notes "We could locate no case
which has upheld one of these
statutes against a full con-
stitutional challenge disposed of
on the merits."
It should be pointed out that in
each of these hundreds of cases,
it has been the retailed, trade
organizations, and organizations
such as NORML which have been
forced to bear the tedious and
very expensive burden of raising
the constitutional challenges. It is
a burden none of us can continue
to bear indefinitely, a lesson not
lost by the Carter Ad-
ministration which is circulating
a "model paraphernalia statute"
to state legislatures. It seems to
incorporate the worst features of
enjoined legislation but is never-
theless being promoted as
capable of withstanding con-
stitutional challenge. N ORML,

. . .L

for one, is thankful that Mr. Fit-
zpatrick did his homework and
offers a bill which will not allow
its definition of smoking
paraphernalia to extend to
ashtrays, brownie mixes, and
ziploc bags as was the tem-
ptation.
I think the Daily does have a
valid, if somewhat muddled
point, in wondering why the
eighteen year-old is or is not an
adult at the convenience of the
state. Both NORML and Perry
Bullard agreed to back HB 5542,
and both have encouraged in-
terested parties to contact their
legislators and encourage them
to amendthe bill to controlsale
only to people under age
eighteen. The Daily might better
expend their talents and energy
doing the same rather than con-
demning a legislator who has

consistently defended civil liber-
ties and the best interests of the
Ann Arbor community for so
many years.
Perhaps the greatest irony of
the situation is that most
retailers that we are familiars
with have for several years
refused to sell smoking materials
and devices to youngsters and
are now thankful for legislation
which clarifies and is largely
consistent with their position. It
is a far better alternative then yet
another federal court fight. The
law may often be an ass, but it
can't hold a candle to the Daily's
editorial implication that a five
year-old has a constitutional
right to a pack of Bull Durham
and a Power-Hitter.
-Roger Winthrop,
Michigan NORML
March4

SYL excluded from rally

Answer to our prayers

T HARDLY seems possible that
anyone could misinterpret the
direct language of the first and four-
teenth Amendments to the Con-
stitution: the two guarantee that
neither Congress nor individual states
shall make any laws respecting any
particular religion.
Yet, there have been of late a num-
ber of mysterious and disconcerting
attempts in several states to directly
contradict this Amendment. Six weeks
ago in Massachusetts a law requiring
prayers in public schools (which
generously allowed students not
wishing to participate to leave the
room) was pushed through by that

state's governor.
Fortunately, the prayers of millions
of Americans who respect the Con-
stitution were answered on Thur-
sday, whenothesMassachusetts
Supreme Court struck down the
freedom-eroding school prayer law.
Tolerance of religious freedom is, as
everyone knows, one of the fundamen-
tal ideas of this country. To demand
that students participate in religious
prayers-often euphemistically called
"silent meditation"-is to undermine
that freedom. Let's hope that we can
put an "amen" to school prayers.
everywhere.

Emotions rule Prosterman

_..- -

To the Daily:
The beliefs which are ruled by
one's emotions instead of careful
reasoning often have their basis
in opinion, and not fact. This is an
unfortunate result, and examples
of this, I think, are found in H.
Scott Prosterman's recent article
("Myths Abundant About Israel,
PLO and Arafat," Daily, Feb. 29)
and the outraged reactions to the
article by Jeffrey Colman (Daily,
March 12) and Carl Cohen (Daily,
March 11). The debate here has
some deeply rooted problems, yet
solutions cannot be found unless
one truly searches for them
without allowing oneself to be
overtaken by emotion or
prejudice.
I do not claim to be an expert on
this subject, yet I have tried to
gather as many facts as I can to
help me better understand the
delicacy of the situation. Battle
lines are often drawn by speakers
on the Palestinian/Israeli
problem, with one side usually
made out to be the righteous; the
other, the villainous.
But this prblem is too complex
to simply take sides on. Indeed, it
appears to me that the brutal
strikes of "retaliation" by either
the Israelis or the Palestinians
are devoid of any real validity.
'the cycle, I think, has continued
now for so long that there cannot
be any good guys left.
Palestinians blow up buses,

to drive the residents of a group
of Palestinians settlements out of
Israel/Palestine. Such acts,
many Jews claim, never hap-
pened, yet why are such claims
covered up, prolonging irrational
beliefs? This is indeed regret-a
table. Why is a prominent Jewish
figure no longer invited to speak
at Jewish gatherings merely
because he expressed sympathy
for the Palestinian refugees? And
further, how can any real peace
be achieved through the Caip
David accords if the Palestinians
are not even represented (a
problem which seems to leave
both sides at fault)? There are
countless other examples of in-
cidents where information which
would have formed a fuller, more
balanced viewpoint is not allowed
to be heard.
The United States is in a
position of extreme influence
regarding the entire
Palestinian/Israeli problem. In-
formation, I think can only help
everyone who is trying to find a
viable solution for all parties in-
volved. Yet real knowledge of the
situation cannot be gained
merely throuh reading press
clippings. The voices of suffering
must be heard by everyone, and
they lie on both sides of the issue.
Facts must be searched for. This
is what we all should do.
Nevertheless, perhaps the most

To The Daily:
On Saturday, Feb. 16, the Mid-
west Coalition Against
Registration and the Draft (Mid-
CARD) held a conference in
Kalamazoo, Michigan sup-
posedly for all interested studen-
ts and organizations opposed to
the draft. At that conference, its
organizers excluded members of
the communist Spartacus Youth
League (SYL) on the pretext that
we did not agree with CARD's
"principles of unity" and that the
SYL has been "disruptive" in the
past.
What is "disruptive" to the
CARD leadership is clearly the
SYL's attempt to raise its
working class opposition not only
to the draft but also to the army
and U.S. imperialism. So while
this conference had been
scheduled to work out a
statement of principles of unity,
their first principle had already
been set: exclude the SYL.
The leadership of the CARD
conference - a liberal
conglomeration of the Maoist
Revolutionary Student Brigade,
the Democratic Party supporters
of the Democratic Socialist
Organizing Committee, and the
New Patriot Alliance - united to
fight the draft explicitly within a
framework loyal to capitalism.
Because these organizations
form anti-draft coalitions with
the racist right-wing Liber-
tarians and the parties of war and
racism, 'the Democrats and
Republicans, they had to
bureaucratically expel those who
woul stand for socialism as the
only road to peace and for
military defense of the Soviet
Union against imperialism,
namely, the SYL.
We were the only group to cut
through CARD's cold-war anti-
Soviet social-patriotic "unity."
The ex-Trotskyist Socialist
Workers Party/Young Socialist
Alliance opportunistically tags
along behind the CARD
organizers hoping to be the "best

war" against the Soviet Union.
Ever since the U.S.'sstinging
defeat in Vietnam, the American
ruling class has sought to recap-
ture its position as "top dog" of
world capitalist powers.
Desperate to recapture one-sixth
of the world that was ripped out
of the clutches of the capitalists
in 1917, the real target of Carter's
war drive is the Soviet Union, the
military powerhouse of the
deformed workers states. We un-
conditionally defend the Soviet
Union against imperialist attack.
Despite the massive
bureaucratic degeneration of the
Soviet workers state since the
time of Lenin and Trotsky, we
recognize that the planned
economy and collectivized
property are a great historic ad-
vance for mankind and must be
defended. We oppose Carter's at-
tempts to bring "democracy"
(like the kind the U.S. brought to
Vietnam and Chile) to Soviet
workers. The Soviet working
class will overthrow the Stalinist
bureaucracy and re-establish
workers democracy only through
political revolution.
"Our opposition to the draft, is
not based on pacifism or social-
patriotic opposition to peace-time
conscription. We are opposed tQ
the bourgeois army, whether.
volunteer or drafted, because we.
are- for proletarian inter->
nationalism and are committed.
to the defeat of U.S. im-
perialism."
The present anti-draft protests
should not become platforms or
campaign rallies for bourgeois
politicians. The Democratic Par-
ty, no less than the Republicans,
is a capitalist party. From the*
Vietnam War to the Bay of Pigs
invasion of Cuba, the Democrats
are totally committed to the in-
terests of imperialism and should
not be allowed to speak at anti-
draft rallies.
The only way forward is to
build a class-struggle fight
against the draft centered around
opposition to U.S.,imperialism

BS~1V~'~i~i r~~uEin~.5~ v a

Back to Top

© 2020 Regents of the University of Michigan