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October 08, 1982 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1982-10-08

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OPINION

Page 4

Friday, October 8, 1982

The Michigan 9i

Media bias. and the crisis in Lebanon

Is Israel being mistreated in the press?
Has a distorted version of the events
surrounding the Beirut massacre been cir-
culated in America?
Yes, charges Emanuel Zippori, Israel's
consul general to the Midwest region of the
United States. Zippori, who was 'in Ann
Arbor recently to speak to local Jewish
groups, spoke with Daily editor Andrew
Chapman about Israel's role in the events
in Beirut and the future of the Likud party.

grounds for terrorists from everywhere as far
away as South America and the Middle East to
Asia and Europe. One of the great ironies is
that there's no doubt about it that the person
who attempted to assassinate the pope was
trained in a PLO camp.
Another aspect of our incursion into Lebanon
was that we were able to free the Christians
and also many of the Moslems of Lebanon from
the terror regime that the PLO had installed in
southern Lebanon. Again, it was much more
than we had ever imagined.
Daily: Do you think the press and the public
reaction just to the invasion, not to what hap-
pened in those two Beirut camps, was
justified?
Zipport: 'I think the media was very biased. I:
think particularly the electronic media, but
also the papers in many cases were very
biased, particularly in the first weeks of the
war. After these first weeks, when the true in-
formation and figures came out, they were
completely ignored-either ignored or buried
on the inside pages of The New York Times.
There was no doubt about it that the press, for
various reasons, it's been analyzed by a num-
ber of writers, was very, very prejudiced in the
beginning of the war. Only later did the truth
come out, when the people finally went there
and saw how little damage there really was to
some of these towns which supposedly had been
destroyed by Israeli bombings.
One of the problems is that the big lie
technique is used, and grabs the headlines,
because it is sensational. The retractions are
buried. People have been getting away with
this for years, and the PLO and their allies got
away with it this time. The press fell into the
trap.
Daily: How about American Jewish com-
munities?
Zippori: The overwhelming majority of the
American Jewish community supported Israel

massacre, although again, we have to put it in a
certain perspective. The only time that the
world has seen fit to come out and denounce
violently the massacres that have taken place
in the Middle East, has been when Israel is
somehow involved in the action. But when the
PLO were slaughtering the Christians in
Lebanon, everybody was quiet. And when the
Christians were slaughtering the Palestinians
everybody was quiet. And nobody was s houting
when the Syrians were slaughtering their own
people. But now when there is a possible im-
plication that Israel might be somehow in-
volved, then the whole world gets up in arms.
Daily: Why is this?
Zippori: I don't know. I think it's part of this
process of blaming Israel for everything that
goes wrong in the Middle East. I think that has
partly to do with the fact that Israel itself was
very indignant, that people in Israel were very
worried by what happened, and protested, and
demanded a full investigation. This perhaps
touched off some of the feelings in the other
parts of the world. I think that what happened
there had nothing to do with Israel's operations
in Lebanon.
Daily: What about the strength of Prime
Minister Begin in the Israeli government right
now? A cabinet member has resigned.
Zippori: The cabinet member who resigned
was at odds with the prime minister over a
number of matters for some time, and he felt
that the cabinet should have backed an in-
vestigation into the massacre sooner. I think
his resignation was a little bit overdue. He's
one man, and he doesn't seem to have too much
support within his own party to go along with
him.
Daily: What about Begin's strength in the
Knesset?
Zippori: It hasn't changed. He still has a solid
majority.

Daily: And you don't think that's going to'be
weakened at all?
Zippori: I don't see anything at the moment
on the horizon which will cause one or other'
the factions to leave the Likud party.
This can change, of course. On the one hanid I
think there will be a sort of a wait and see sort
of period until people see what the in-
vestigating committee brings in. If, after all
that is in, the commission comes out and says,
we find that X, Y or Z are responsible for doi'ig
this or that or the other, then obviously
somewhere responsibility will have to be taken,
either at the level of the army command, or at
the political.level.
But I don't see anything in the near futur
that any of the parties are willing to shift ah
leave the coalition. Unless the religious parties
leave the coalition, there is no, even if some-'of
the smaller parties do leave, there is "no
possibility of anyone else forming a gover-
nment.
Daily: Labor?
Zippori: No, they couldn't possibly form a
government. Because nobody is going to form a
government with the communists. There are 50
labor seats.'The Likud party certainly will h4
leave the .government. The communists are
four seats. If the Likud party and the religious
groups stay in then Mr. Begin has his majority.
If the religious groups fake out, then the labor
group has a possibility if they're willing to join
with labor, which is a question. There are other
issues in Israel besides the incursion of
Lebanon, on which the labor party and the
religious parties are far apart. But if they were
to join together, then there could be an alter-
native government.
Dialogue is a weekly feature of the
Opinion Page.

Emanuel Zippori

. Daily: Let's-start with Israel and Lebanon,
and the invasion. Would you term it an in-
vasion?,
Zippori: No, I wouldn't term it an invasion, it
was an incursion into Lebanon because we
were not fighting the Lebanese. We went into
Lebanon to fight the PLO. The PLO had
established in southern Lebanon a quasi-
independent state. They were threatening our
security, they were threatening our people and
our towns and villages in Northern Israel, and
we went in to remove that threat from our nor-
thern frontiers, and to destroy the military
strength of the PLO.
At the same time, we destroyed the base of
international terrorism which the PLO had
established in Lebanon. One of the things that
we found was the extent to which the PLO
camps in Lebanon were used as training

throughout this period. There are always
elements in the community who criticized-
various stages of the fighting. But I think
again, you have to realize that for a large part
of the American Jewish community, their only
real source for information is the daily local
newspaper or the local television station. But I
think the press played up the voices of dissiden-
ts. If a city or a town had 20 rabbis, and 18 of
them supported Israel, and two were critical,
the only ones who were quoted in the press
were the two that were critical.
Daily: A lot of blame has been put on Israel
for the massacre. How do you feel about that?
Zippori: I think everybody in Israel was
deeply shocked, grieved, and enraged about
the massacre. There is no doubt that there is
just indignation of the whole world about this

-_-,

Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

Wasserman

Vol. XCIlI, No. 26

420 Maynara St.
Ann Arbor, M' 48109

3

Editorials represento'njority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board

NU"Rt 74S1 AUTO DS
MAND OTNER 'UNE,S"E%

BUT I SEE O DNERO
A 9EPRE~)

4

S&FEUAD TO PREVENT
cRSps

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A well-ti

T'S ONE OF the great ironies of the
renewal of the Cold War that-at:
the same time the U.S. government is
so vehemently condemning the Soviet
Union-less and less emphasis is being
placed on actually studying its
greatest potential adversary.
Some have suggested, in fact, that
American studies of the Soviet Union
have dropped to their lowest level sin-
ce the late 40s, when the first American
centers for Soviet studies were foun-
ded.
Into this mess has stepped W.
Averell Harriman, former governor of
New York and ambassador to the
Soviet Union, with a gift of $1 million to
Columbia University. The gift has been
made with the stipulation that it be
used by Columbia's prestigious

i.

med gift
Russian Institute.
The gift will encourage study of a
nation which is important not just
because of its role as an adversary, but
because of its rich and diverse culture.
The Harriman gift, of course, is just
a drop in the bucket compared to the
total needs of American universities
for funds. Many academic areas, such
as Russian studies, don't attract the
hordes of students interested in the
highest possible starting salaries. Yet
these same studies are' crucial to the
nation, and deserve generous support.
It's often the case that ignorance
breeds troubles. The Harriman gift
will help breed knowledge and under-
standing in a field which can easily use
both.

0,

Freeze movement a hot idea

"RIGHT REI

( r-s
- - r
vi

By Tripp Amdur
One year ago few people had
ever heard of the proposal for a
nuclear weapons freeze. Even,
fewer understood its im-
plications.
Today there are dozens of
national organizations actively
supporting the Freeze and
literally thousands of local
Freeze organizations nationwide.
The three-quarters of a million
people who crowded into New
York's Central Park last June
represent only the outer crust of a
massive popular movement more
encompassing than any since the
Vietnam war.
But unlike the strong partisan-
ship which typified the anti-war
movement, today's dispute over
nuclear weapons cannot be
characterized as a struggle bet-
ween the left and the right, or the

young and the old. Advocates of a
nuclear weapons freeze range
from neo-Marxists to ex-
supporters of Barry Goldwater.
Today's movement is not viewed
as a cry for revolution, but as an
appeal for change.
George Kennan, the renowned
Soviet expert whose famous 1946
article helped usher in the Cold
War, is today advocating an im-
mediate, across-the-board reduc-
tion of 50 percent of the present
nuclear arsenals in both the
United States and the Soviet
Union.
Kennan is not alone. A great
many of the most knowledgeable
and respected leaders in gover-
nment, acadermia, politics, and
even the military are calling for
an immediate halt to this suicidal
spiral.
At a broader level the likely
passage of Proposition E this
November will add Michigan to
the growing list of states, cities,

and vilages across the country
whose entire populations have
demanded an end to this ever-
escalating nuclear madness.
But meanwhile, how does
President Reagan react to this
massive appeal pouring 'forth
from virtually every quadrant of
American society?
Still engrossed by the myths of
old Westerns, the president con-
tinues to play the role of the
mythical wagonmaster protec-
ting his flock from marauding
Commanches. Standing in the
footsteps of Joe McCarthy and
with his head stuck firmly in the
sand, Reagan declared last Mon-
day that supporters of the
nuclear freeze are being
manipulated by outside forces
who "wish to see the weakening
of America."
Reagan and those members of
Congress who are supporting his
massive military build-up are
living in a dangerous and

paralyzing cocoon of parahoia
which bears little relatioin to
reality and which threatens pur
future existence as individuals
and as a nation.
Fortunately, America is a
democracy and ultimately ,our
leaders must reflect the will cf its
citizens. But for democracy to
work as it should, people must be
both informed enough to dee
their opinions and active to i
sure their implementation. 3
Once informed, becoming 'ac-
tive" can be as simple as talking
about the issue with friends,
wearing a button, and finally
casting a ballot for the freeze.
It seems people take
democracy for granted too often.
It doesn't take much to translate
opinions and values into polidy-
but it does take something.
Amdur is an LSA senior. He
is a member of Students for a
Nuclear Weapons Freeze.

LETTERS TO THE DAILY:

The Dark Ages come to the Diag

0

To the Daily:
I happened upon the knights of
the old Round Table the other day
while walking across the Diag.
They did what many superan-
nuated groups do when they're
out for a new start: They
renamed their band the Society
for Creative Anachronisms and
went on international tour.

"And what is that which you
carry?"
"A lance, you thick-witted
dolt!" Sir Gawain's body had
become rigid and he began
flailing his lance. Perceiving his
mild agitation, I took a step back.
"It seems unnecessary to
wear such adequate protection
when using a lance to do honor to

who used chivalry to veil violen-
ce, the knights of the Society for
Creative Anachronisms have
used "re-enactments" of
Medieval combat (with padded
sabers) to veil their baser ten-
dencies toward destructiveness.
' The misnamed "Dark Ages"
was actually a time of artistic
and musical accomplishment.

Religions were shaped, new trade
routes opened, and regional
languages developed. While, the
Society may have other interests,
it is unfortunate that its wars are
the most prominently displayed.
Perhaps they are not so
anachronistic after all.
-Robert Levine
October*

I -

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