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March 22, 1989 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1989-03-22

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OPINI

The Michigan Daily
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

Wednesday, March 22, 1989

Page 4

WE ARE AMERICANS AND JEWS AND WE ARE PROUD TO RECOGNIZE THE
NEW STATE OF PALESTINE. AT THIS HISTORIC TIME PLEASE JOIN US.

This historic statement from the JEWISH COMMITTEE ON THE MIDDLE EAST has already been
endorsed by more than a thousand American Jews including Jewish Professors at over 100 Universities.
Whether you are Jewish or not please join and support this vital effort.

Vol. IC, No. 117

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor MI 48109

i

Unsigned editorials represent a majority of the Daily's Editorial Board. All ot ar
cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion
of the Daily.

Stop terror tactics

ON MARCH 6, a physician who had
reprinted an advertisement criticizing
Israel's treatment of Palestinians found
his Trenton clinic vandalized. Dr.
Rafeek Farah, a Palestinian physician,
ran the advertisement (reprinted at
right) in the Friday and weekend edi-
tions of the Detroit Free Press. That
weekend he received threatening phone
calls, and the windows of his office
were broken.
This is not an isolated incident. It is
part of a systematic and organized
campaign to squelch debate on the is-
sue of Palestine/Israel. In 1985 the
Jewish Defense League assassinated
Alex Odeh, a Palestinian-American ac-
tivist, according to the FBI. Last month
the B'nai B'rith International sent a
fundraising letter to its membership
Which stated that the "presence of Arab
students on our college campuses is
poisoning the mind of our young peo-
ple." Last week, the Palestinian shanty,
Which memorialized 500 Palestinians
Jkilled by the Israeli army since the be-
ginning of the Intifada, was destroyed.
These incidents are indicative of the
tactics of terror used to silence Pales-
tinians and those in solidarity with their
legitimate aspirations for self-determi-
nation and statehood.
The original advertisement was paid
fpr by the Washington, D.C.-based
Jewish Committee on the Middle East
(JCOME), and signed by its executive
Fommitteea group of fourteen rabbis,
lawyers and professors. In the adver-
tisement, JCOME deplores the Israeli
policies of beating and killing
Palestinians, argues for Israeli negoti-
itions with the PLO and recognition of
p Palestinian State in the occupied
Restore wom
March is Women's History Month,
challenging traditional academia to re-
*store women to their deserving place in
history. Restructuring the educational
system is a vital part of the women's
movement with repercussions far be-
yond the bounds of college campuses.
Historically few women have held
positions of power, or fulfilled roles
that this society deems important. Ar-
guably, all the mothers in this country
are more important than Donald
Trump, but history will not remember
them. In addition, history books and
the men who write them have

territories, and demands that the United
States cut aid for Israel until it respects
the rights of Palestinians.
"For some years we have witnessed
Israel increasingly deviating from po-
litical policies that we find acceptable
and from moral values that we hold
dear. These developments are not the
responsibility of any particular political
party in Israel but rather stem, in our
judgement, from a tragically misguided
approach to the Arab world in which
Israel is located, a racialist ideology
and a growing militancy. We can no
longer condone or be associated with
such Israeli behavior, nor, do we be-
lieve, should our country."
Mark Bruzonsky, JCOME's execu-
tive chair, said that he and other mem-
bers of the organization have also been
subjected to hate mail and threatening
phone calls. Bruzonsky said, "This is
sort of response is very expected...
various leaders in the Jewish commu-
nity try to undermine our actions by
printing statements such as the one that
the Mayor of Oak Park, Charlotte
Rothstein, came out with stating the ad
was a misrepresentation."
The JCOME advertisement reveals
the division in the American Jewish
community over how to deal with and
think about Israel. The harassment and
violence which JCOME and the doctor
who reprinted the advertisement were
subjected to reveals the lengths to
which apologists for the State of Israel
will go to stifle those who challenge it.
But efforts to silence opposition to Is-
rael will not stop the flow of legitimate
criticism and debate. Until voices such
as JCOME's are taken seriously, there
can be no resolution to the conflict.
len's history
There are several groups on campus
working directly on the issue of
women's history. The Baker-Mandela
Center is videotaping interviews with
local Black women to construct an oral
history of women of color in the area.
Working on women's history is an
important way to celebrate this month.
However, there are also many
opportunities on campus to take direct
action on women's issues.
The Sexual Assault Prevention and
Awareness Center (SAPAC) always
needs volunteers. Currently it needs
students for office work and staffing
the rape crisis line this summer.
The Ann Arbor Coalition Against
Rape is organizing the annual "Take
Back the Night" march and rally to take
place on April 15. Organizational
meetings are being held regularly, and
all women are encouraged to attend the
march
The Coalition to Defend Abortion
Rights (CDAR) combats right-wing at-
tempts to close down abortion clinics.
The group anticipates strikes on clinics
across the state this Friday, and needs
people to help keep the clinics open.
Also on the issue of abortion, the Na-
tional Organization for Women (NOW)
is sponsoring a march on Washington,
on April 9, to advocate the Equal
Rights Amendment and uphold legal

abortion in the face of new court chal-
lenges. A bus for interested participants
will run from Ann Arbor to Washing-
ton.

We are Americans and Jews and we come together at this time publicly to express
our strong desire to see the United States take meaningful steps to dissociate our country
from the policies of Israel and to support mutual recognition between Israel and the new
State of Palestine.
For some years we have witnessed Israel increasingly deviating from political policies
that we find acceptable and from moral values that we Fold dear. These developments
are not the responsibility of any particular political party in Israel but rather stem, in our
judgement, from a tragically misguided approach toward the Arab world in which Israel is
located, a racialist ideology and a growing militancy. We can no longer condone or be
associated with such Israeli behavior, nor, do we believe, should our country.
In recent years Israel has twisted away from basic commitments made at Camp David
in 1978; annexed further territories, including East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, while
continuing to expand settlements in all the occupied territories; and grotesquely invaded
Lebanon, resulting in the death of tens of thousands of Lebanese and Palestinians as well
as hundreds of Israelis and Americans, and the taking as hostages of others.
Furthermore, Israeli policies and attitudes toward the Palestinian people have made it
evident that only major changes in Israel's basic posture will allow for a peaceful political
settlement with the Palestinians.
Israeli complicity in Irangate and Contragate coupled with Israel's employment of
American Jews as spies against our country further underscore the growing dangers
inherent in the current U.S.-Israeli relationship. The close identification in the public mind
between Israel and Jews - an equation vigorously fostered by both the Zionist movement
and the American Jewish lobby, which has
come under its control - threatens to stig-
matize Jews everywhere.
The recent acts of killings, beatings,
curfews, expulsions and house arrests- -
all against unarmed Palestinians living in
areas Israel has occupied for 21 years-
further demonstrate that Israel has be-t
come a badly divided country with many
unfortunate similarities to the situation that
prevails in South Africa.t
Our ancestors came to the United
States because, as a result of their
Jewishness, they were discriminated
against and abused. The European ex-
penene cuminated in the horrors of thef";
azi Holocaust.Howtragicthat in our own
time the very State established by Jews in
the aftermath of this evil has become a
place where racialism, religious dis-
crimination, militarism and injustice
prevail: and that Israel itself has become_
a pariah state within the world community.t
Events taking place today are all too,
reminiscent of thepo groms from which
our own forefathers fed two and three

generations ago - but this time those in authority are Jews and the victims are Moslem
and Christian Palestinians.
We believe that Israel's course could not be maintained but for the continuing financial,
political, military and covert support of the U.S. government. And we fear that unless firm
steps of disengagement from Israel are taken now our country might get dragged into a
major war for which preparations are under way.
In addition, we believe that unless the United States takes serious steps to distance
itself from Israel the Israelis will mistakenly continue to think that the course they are on
is acceptable to the American people.
For all these reasons we believe the time has come to normalize the U.S. relationship
with Israel. A complete re-evaluation of what has become since 1967 the American
sponsorship of Israel is required. The unprecedented amounts of economic aid should be
cut back over the next two to three years to much smaller levels. Furthermore, the
considerable military and intelligence assistance should also be radically reduced.
Unfortunately, in recent years much the opposite course has been followed, and Israel
has practically become a ward of the United States. We urge an urgent and open debate
about the serious problems and dangers which have resulted from the current structure
of U.S-Israeli relations. Few foreign policy issues are of such importance to our country.
Consequently, we urge everyone, including our elected public officials, to resist the
widespread inhibitions from speaking up about Israel, inhibitions which result from the
severe financial, political and ideological pressures often brought to bear against those
who do.

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We further believe that the time is over-
due for negotiations between the Israeli
government and the PLO. which is quite
clearly the chosen representative for the
great majority of Palestinians - negotia-
tions that should quickly lead to full recog-
nition of the Palestinian State in todays
occupied territories and reasonable
security guarantees for all parties. In the
security guarantees we think our country
should participate; but no longer in the
financing and supporting of the kinds of
policies Israel has been pursuing. The con-
tinual oppression and denial of Palestinians
of their right to 'self-determination is an in-
justice which has become intolerable not
only to those demonstrating for their
freedom in Jerusalem, the West Bank,
Gaza and throughout Israel itself.
The citizens of Israel, of course, will
ultimately choose their own country's des-
tiny. But at the very least the citizens of the
United States should stop financing and
supporting policies that are contrary to the
principles and values we hold precious as
Americans and Jews.

az R

The Executive Committee of(JCOME :
Professor Yi gal Arens
University of Southern California
Los Angeles. CA
Rabbi Leonard Beerntan
Los Angeles, CA1
Pro~f ssor Ioel Beinin .
MiddleLast Histors .Stanford Univ.
Palo Alto. CAl
Mark Bru:onskv
Writer and lawyer. Former Washington
Associate of World Jewish Congress
Washington. DC

Ribbi Susan Einbinder
New York. NY
Protesser Richard Falk
International Law, Princeton University
Princeton. NJ
Professor Herbert Hill
University of Wisconsin at Madison:
Former Labor Director NAACP
Madison. WIl

Pr'ofessor Zachary Locknan
Middle East History. Harvard Univ.
Cambridge. MA
Pro fessor .Sevnour Melman
Columbia University
New York, NY
Projfessor Don Per-et-
Middle East Studies, State Univ. of N.Y.
Binghamton, NY
Rabbi Michael Robinson
Croton-on-Hudson. NY

Henrv Schwar:schi/d
Jewish Peace Fellowship: New York, NY
Professor Steven Schuwar:schild
Philosophy and Judaic Studies
Washington University: St. Louis, Mfg
Richard Walden
Attone s
Los Angeles, C A

The original advertisement paid for by the Jewish Committee on the Middle East.

Circle

of

violence

By Pam Galpern
The New York Times, in an article dis-
cussing the recent change in the Immigra-
tion and Naturalization Service's (INS)
policy toward Central American refugees,
called a new INS detention facility being
built in Bayview, Texas a cross between a
summer camp and a military base. Perhaps
I went to a unique summer camp, but
somehow I do not associate being forcibly
detained in makeshift tents with crowded
conditions and inadequate sanitary facili-
ties, being denied access to legal counsel,
being pressured to return to dangerous if
not fatal conditions in one's country of
origin, and being purposely denied infor-
mation concerning one's legal rights, with
summer camp of any sort.
On February 20 of this year the INS
initiated a new policy to deal with the
massive flow of refugees from Central
America. The new policy is designed to
discourage the refugees from entering the
United States by judging applications on
the day they are received and by detaining
those who are denied in the conditions
mentioned above. The result has been the
speedier rejection of applications. Previous
policies allowed refugees to remain 'at
liberty' while their applications were be-
ing processed. At liberty, however, meant
that the refugees were confined to the
limitations of a certain area, in Texas and
the Rio Grande Valley, stretching 100
miles into the United States beyond the
Mexican border. The Valley became a jail
without walls, and because refugees are
denied work permits, they were unable to
gain access to housing, food, or jobs. This
caused a massive strain not only on the
Central Americans themselves, but also
on the small South Texas communities
which are thus forced to absorb the in-
creasing numbers of refugees.
Why the spiraling influx of refugees
from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador,
and Nicaragua? Different factors underlie
the causes of emigration from those coun-
tries. For example, most Nicaraguans are
fleeing for economic rather than political
reasons, the Nicaraguan economy having
been devastated by nine years of U.S.
sponsored war and a trade embargo.
Refugees from El Salvador, on the other

tional Liberation Front/Revolutionary
Democratic Front (FMLN/FDR). U.S. aid
is used to terrorize the population into
submission. Government troops and death
squads have assassinated more than 70,000
civilians, and abducted or 'disappeared'
another 8,000 over the past eight years.
This incredible repression has been ac-
companied by the constant bombings of
rural communities, part of a counter in-
surgency plan designed to separate the
guerrillas from their civilian supporters.
As a result, families and often entire vil-
lages have abandoned their native homes
in order to flee government sponsored

the results of the problem it has created.
The new INS policy is accompanied by
the construction of numerous new .deten-
tion centers. I visited a detention center mn
Harlingen, Texas last summer. The pris-
oners (for that is what they are) were.
dressed in bright orange jumpsuits and:
woken at 5 a.m. for rollcall, only to sit:
around all day with nothing to do but'
watch television. Some had been in deten--
tion for as long as 9 months, and many;
were being pressured to return to their:
countries despite the danger they would:
face.
The INS is legally required to provide
the refugees with access to legal counsel;
the list of lawyers given to the refugees'
included mostly disconnected phone num-I
bers, or names of lawyers who do not deal
with asylum cases. The name of the one-
service in the Valley offering free legal aid
to refugees, Proyecto Libertad, is not in-
cluded on the list, although they are fight-
ing to be. INS judges are not elected, but*
rather appointed. Asylum hearings area
conducted in English, with only direct
questions posed to the refugees translated,
rendering them helpless in figuring out
what is going on. The conditions were de-
plorable. I can only begin to imagine how#
much they have deteriorated as the num-
bers of refugees have skyrocketed, and the
policy has been changed to rush the pro-
cess, if not discourage the refugees coming
altogether.
The answer to this problem seems ob-
vious: should the U.S. cease giving aid to
El Salvador, the popular forces in that
country will have the opportunity estab-
lish the peaceful and more egalitarian
society they are proposing. Should the aid
continue, the fighting and government re-
pression will continue, causing an ever-
increasing refugee problem for this coun-
try, as well as continuing the daily vio-
lence facing the Salvadoran people.
As part of Central America Awareness
week the Celayas, a Salvadoran refugee
family living in Sanctuary here in Ann
Arhr will h ecnnLking a traditional

consistently marginalized women's
pontributions - ignoring, for example,
the leading role women played in the
ivil Rights Movement. Women's
History Month is part of an effort to
restore these women who have been
pbscured to their place in history.
The largely-male educational
;stablishment (out of 440 full profes-

Robert Carris
Salvadoran refugees in Colomon-
cagua, Honduras. There are more than
8,400 refugees in the camp, more than
5,000 of them young children.
violence. One quarter of the population are
currently internal refugees, while over 1.2
million people have fled the country.
Refugees are not coming to this country
from El Salvador by choice; they are flee-
ing for their lives, leaving their homes and
communities which are being destroved h

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