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March 18, 1986 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1986-03-18

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4

OPINION
Page4 Tuesday, March 18, 1986 The Michigan Daily

A

Edite andmnaged bstudntst nstichigan
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

An Israel

Vol. XCVI, No. 113

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Unsigned editorials represent a majority of the Daily's Editorial Board

Reject Reagan's

plea

C ONGRESS must not ap-
propriate $100million in aid to
the Contras, the rag-tag bunch of
CIA and U.S. taxpayer-supported
guerrillas fighting to overthrow the
Sandinista government of
Nicaragua. The Contras have no
support from the Nicaraguan
people and according to the
resigned leader of one of their prin-
cipal forces, FDN Commander
Edgar Chamarrow, have in-
stigated a premeditated policy to
terrorize civilian non-combatants.
Indeed, the Contras are known for
murdering, raping, and pillaging in
the countryside.
Reagan's lame assertion that the
Nicaraguan situation is com-
parable to recent democratic suc-
cesses in the Philippines and Haiti
isabsurd. The U.S. administration
did play a vital diplomatic role to
help overthrow dictators Marcos
and Duvalier. Both had committed
atrocities, oppressing their people,
and violating human rights.
Though the Sandinistas have their
faults, they are hardly on par with
these totalitarians. The Sandinistas
were popularly elected and since
then have instigated education,
health, and agrarian reforms.
The administration's prime
allegation against the Sandinistas
is that they are an atheist, Communist
establishment. However, President
Daniel Ortega and his family are
practicing Catholics; 60 percent of
Nicaragua's economy is privately
owned, and until the 1984 trade em-
bargo, the United States was its
biggest source of trade. With in-
creasing United States support to
the Contras, the Sandinistas have
had to turn to the Soviets and
Cubans for more help. Reagan has
speculated that Soviets will use
Nicaragua as a base for military
strength. Even if this claim were
substantiated, $70 million of aid to
the Contras could not block such a
plan. Further, the Sandinistas
agreed to dispel all foreign military

advisors, including Cuban and
Soviet personnel, in exchange for
direct negotiations with the United
States. Reagan rejected this offer,
as well as the 1984 Contadora draft
treaty which the Sandinistas ac-
cepted. If other Latin American
countries feared Nicaraguan in-
vasion, as Reagan charges, they
would not have pressed for such
negotiations, nor would they con-
demn the Contras. In fact, no
major Western Democracy has
recognized the Contras or
approved U.S. support for them.
Reagan's accusations against
those in the United States who op-
pose his aid plan have been
similarly unfair and harsh. He
called dissenters anti-American
Communist supporters, ignored the
White House poll which showed
that most Americans don't support
the aid package, and refused to
admit that he plans to overthrow
the Sandinista government.
In response to this position,
members of Congress have tried to
compromise. Senator Sasser's
proposal to hold the aid in escrow
for six months pending favorable
negotiation is one vain attempt.
While Sasser's plan has merit, the
administration will only accept it if
the funds were automatically
released without a Congressional
vote. Such a stipulation is inap-
propriate and could have serious
ramifications.
The only plausible scenario is one
in which Reagan realizes, perhaps
with the help of special envoy
Phillip Habib, that he must meet
with the Sandinistas immediately,
withdraw Contra support, and help
promote educational, medical, and
agricultural reforms. The United
States has no business trying to
overthrow a popularly elected
government in order to gain control
of the country. History has taught
that such meddling leads to
limitless spending and the tragic
waste of young American lives.
Surely, we have learned our lesson.

Muhammaed Darawashi is a 22-year-old
Israeli Arab who lives in the village of Iksal,
near Nazareth in the Central Galilee of
Israel. Last week, while Darawashi was in
Ann Arbor, he shared his thought on topics
ranging from his personal struggle as an
Arab within Israel to the Middle East con-
flict. Daily Opinion Page staffer Peter
Ephross interviewed Darawashi in
Darawashi's third langauge- English.
H hat follows are excerpts from that inter-
view.
ON HIS RECENT PAST:
"The last five years I lived in Jerusalem...
where I studied, I went to school. I worked
also, in an institute called The Institute for
Education for Co-existence between Arabs
and Jews. I worked in a program called
Perach which is like the Big Brother
program here. I was coordinator for the
Arabrsection, which included about 265
students. I worled the last year and a half in
the Knesset (the Israeli Parliament) as a
Parliamentary Assistant...
"When I got to Hebrew U. (in Jerusalem),
I was a very radical, right-wing person. I
believed that the only solution to the Middle
East problem was to get rid of the Jews.
There was a dialogue group that was faking
place... I went the first few times defending
my position, which is that we have to go for
war, that we have to fight for these things.
There I had the chance to know that my
struggle is not only an Arab struggle, Jewis
can pass the same struggle also... My fight
for democracy is not only an Arab fight;
it's a fight that both Jews and Arabs can live
with. I didn't realize the misassumption I
was putting myself in. I was relying on the
historical basis the Palestinians have there
and at the same time denying the same right
for Jews."
ON HIS STAY IN AMERICA:
"I'm here until the end of September this
year, working and bettering Jewish-Arab
relations here first of all. And second of all,
I'm here to raise the awareness of people
about the issues of the Middle East, and to
offer them another option besides the debate
of proving the other side is wrong, which is
most of what happens here.
ON MYTHS/ILLUSIONS:
"I think that the question is not the
question of who has more rights, because
each Jew can prove that Jews have more
rights than anybody else in that piece of
land. Palestinians can also prove that they
have more rights in that piece of land. It's
not a question of right... Each side can prove
it historically, geographically, culturally.
The identity of the two nations is established
and made out of this specific land. It was
Palestine; it is Israel... Palestinians care
there... Jews are there. Nationality is not
something you can refer to very
specifically, it's a state of mind, it's how you
identify yourself. Trying to prove there are
no Jews and no Palestinians, that's not
going to get anywhere."
"The image of Palestinian within the
Jewish community and within the American
community is Palestianian-Terrorist.
That's not true. Within the Palestianian
community and the Arab world and all kinds
of other places, a Jew-Invader. And that's
not true."
My struggle personally is for civil rights

1 Arab speaks
inside Israel but in the other direction ...
establishing a Palestinian state for
Palestinians outside of Israel. My problem
inside Israel is fighting against
discrimination andimplementing all the
principles that are included within
democracy, the theoretical democracy
that's supposed to be Israel. I'm not saying
that Israel is apartheid by any means. I
won't say that because that's a concept that
just does not implement itself there. Apar-
theid means one man does not count one
vote. Inside that specific state and in Israel
proper that's not true. It's not a problem of
apartheid for me; it's a problem of being a
second-class citizen. With the West Bank,
it's also not apartheid; it's worse than apar-
theid. . . Occupation is worse than apar-
theid. The treatment there is not done on a
civil level; it's done on a military level. So,
using the term apartheid by applying it to the
West Bank and Israeli affairs-it's just
fooling ourselves with the terms. They are
terms that do not exist there.
Also, trying to paint things, saying that
everything is wonderful, everything is nice
and we have to live with each other because
we have to love each other is not true ... we
have to live with each other because that'sar
in our interest, to live with each other." Dara
ON CHANGE: .. . works
". ..You can't justify to your own people
that the other side has some right there (in out that the other sid
Israel) as long as the types of relationships treme is feeding t
that we have there are tension relation- giving legitimacy fo
ships: either employer-employee relation- exist. And it's very o
ships or soldier-second-class citizen tremes are not fighti
relationships. From such types of relation- "Kahane is not fi
ships, you can't imagine that something can Abu Nidal is not figh
change." they do is that they
"If you can change the type of relation- to legitimize theirI
ships and change the attitude of the people there is a terrori
there toward each other, that might give out Kahane gets more
a whole ship of new concepts of living with when Kahane speak
each other, of new concepts of solutions to Nidal says, you see
the Middle East.. ." Jews. This is their t
ON DISCRIMINATION WITHIN ISRAEL: more and more t
"We as Arab citizens fulfill all the rights society on the other s
that we are asked to do is Israel. . . We pay
for taxes, which the government, from the "It's very easy to
taxes they collect, give back national right, the others are'
budgets for local councils and a problem; throw the
municipalities. We are 17 percent of the are a problem, throw
population, about 700,000 Arabs living in To be moderate, on
Israel, and we pay full taxes according to difficult, because thc
our percentage. What we get back instead of extremes."
17 percent to develop our community is two
percent. If that's not discrimination, I don't "I think the way w
know what to call it. tremism is not to be
ON PALESTINIAN REPRESENTATION: tremism. Abu Nidali
". Each side decides for himself who by the PLO, and I thi
their representatives are. fcan say at least for him. I think Kaha
one thing: any negotiating committee that is jail not tomorrow, bu
not approved by Hussein from one side, by
Jordan on one side, and from the PLO, is not ON SOLVING THE C
going to be a legitimate representative of "One of the proble
the Palestinians. You need the Palestinians Middle East and als
to decide for themselves who's going to Arab communities a
represent them." lack of trust. I don't
"I'm ready to go for elections amongst the trust Arabs and I d
Palestinians . . . If the PLO is not qualified that trust Jews. Trus
enough to get the support of the majority of a market ... You can
the Palestinians then they're not really good give me three kilos o
enough to represent the Palestinians ... But up by first of all bui
the statistics show the majority of derstanding between
Palestinians, at least 90 percent of them, ding which is not a
support the PLO as their representative. If searching for agreen
we suspect this, let's check this." as different becausea
ON TERRORISM/EXTREMISM: "It's not an easy
"What's terrifying me more than struggle; it's a fight
anything else in this whole balagan we need is a new re
(chaos) in the Middle East is this growth of people of how they r
extremism from both sides that is taking this new reality y
place .. . there are all kinds of different nothing. You have to
groups that are going beyond just speaking it."

4
I

out

wshi
for peace

I

le is wrong ... One ex-
he other extreme and
r the other extreme to
bvious that the two ex-
ng each other."
ghting Abu Nidal and
hting Kahane ... What
use each other in order
perspectives. . . When
st attack anywhere,
and more votes, and
s more radically, Abu
I told you about the
rue face. They become
he legitimate face of
ide."
be extreme. Say I am
wrong ... The Jews are
m. to the sea; the Arabs
them to the desert ...
the other hand, is very
en you're fighting both
e have to deal with ex-
compromising with ex-
is condemned to death
nk that's less than fair
ne should be thrown in
t today."
ONFLICT:
ms that we have in the
o within the Jewish and
ll over the world is the
know many Jews that
)n't know many Arabs
t, you can't buy it from
n't go to market and say
f trust. Trust you build
lding some kind of un-
people. . . Understan-
greement . . . I'm not
vent. Accept each other
wve are different."
fight; it's not an easy
against reality. What
ality, a new attitude of
elate to each other and
ou can't create from
prepare the grass for

I,

Opened church doors

T HE U.S. Immigration and
Naturalization Service has
stated that Salvadorans are vic-
tims of general violent conditions
in their country and can not be
evaluated for asylum on an in-
dividual basis. Since the 1979 civil
war in El Salvador, 40-50,000
civilian non-combatants have been
killed, mostly by government
troops.
Recently, the U.N. High Com-
missioner declared that any
asylum applicants after the civil
war should be entitled to prima
facie recognition from all nations.
This declaration reinforces the
U.S. Refugee Act of 1980, which
states that asylum should be gran-
ted to anyone who can prove fear
of prosecution on the basis of race,
nationality, religion, membership
in a particular social group, or for
holding a certain political opinion.
The United States, however,
refuses to uphold these policies.
The average acceptance rate of all
asylum applicants is 35 percent,
but only three percent from El
Salvador and Guatemala. The ad-
ministration has influenced
popular opinion to believe that
most refugees seek economic

for Vietnam War draft resisters.
These church humanists feel
a moral responsibility to
break the law and help these per-
secuted people.
But increasing insensitivity to
the human religious dedication of
Quakers and others has caused
concern for the movement. Courts
have employed tactics such as
''jury nullification," in which the
judge instructs the jury to
disregard religious motivation as
part of the testimony when making
their decision. They have ruled
against informing jurors of
political conditions and human
rights in Central America, the U.S.
role, and international laws and
relations treaties that the United
States has signed.
Church members have claimed
defensive necessity, feeling
morally obliged to break the law to
prevent greater harm, much as one
could justify trespassing to save
someone in a burning building.
Providing sanctuary to hurting
people is the primary objective of
these brave church menibers and
others who are risking arrest to
help others. The refugees they
choose to help are committed to

Chassy

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