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September 06, 1990 - Image 30

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1990-09-06

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Page 6-The Michigan Daily/New Student Edition - Thursday, September 6, 1990

Time for groups,

'U' to

begin recycling posters

The Palestine Solidarity Committee has built and rebuilt a number of shanties over the past five years. Most
shanties, regardless of sponsoring group, habitually endure vandalism.
PSC works toward goals

by Daily Staff
One of the benefits of attending
A university as large and as presti-
gious as the University of Michi-
gan is the presence of a vocal and
diverse student body. One of the
best ways to express differing mes-
sages is through advertising points
of view - through posters, chalk
on the sidewalks and in classrooms,
or a number of other ways. While
the messages are important, their
means of deliverance causes unnec-
essary waste on campus.
With the country's reawakening
of concern for the environment -
especially in light of Earth Day -
the University community should
be more sensitive to our surround-
ings. The waste caused by posting
flyers around campus is tremen-
dous; the University spends
$400,000 a year to clean up
posters.
The volume of paper accumu-
lated on the bulletin boards in the
fishbowl alone is unimaginable.
The bulletin board is cleaned
weekly, but the refuse is thrown
away, not recycled. Include all the
other boards around campus, includ-
ing all the bathroom stalls, all the
classrooms, all the kiosks, and all
the other places people post, and
the result is a disgusting amount of
garbage that is not being recycled.
If a group is sponsoring an
event it finds particularly impor-
tant, it will post on the sidewalks.

No one cleans these flyers up. They
are kicked up or washed away and
further harm the environment.
This is not to say that student
groups should stop advertising their
events; promoting and encouraging
the exchange of ideas is the most
important mission of any univer-
sity. But people who publicize
events should clean up their own
posters responsibly. Ripping down
g4reener place givethiem }
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posters takes less time than taping
them up, and a group could make a
sweep of the campus immediately
following their event to make sure
their posters are taken down, recy-
cled, and not left to be thrown
away.
Additionally, the University
should begin recycling its refuse. In
addition to the posters it removes,
the University produces unnecessary
waste in dorms, cafeterias, class-
rooms - essentially all areas of the
institution. As landfill space be-
comes more scarce and the Univer-
sity continues to produce unbeliev-
able amounts of garbage, the situa-
tion will only continue to get more
dire. Though recycling efforts have
begun, the University needs to
make waste reduction a priority.
The environment is something
which the world has been abusing
for thousands of years. Just in the
past few years, people have begun
to realize that we cannot take our
surroundings for granted if we are to
have a healthy planet in the years to
come. The campus is a perfect place
for students to begin to take action
to reverse the trends of a deteriorat-
ing environment. There is no rea-
son why students shouldn't take an
interest. It's very nice to claim to
be an environmentalist, but unless
actions are put behind the words,
the words mean very little.

by Judy Ruttenberg
December 8, 1987 marked the
beginning of the intifada, the Pales-
tinian uprising in the Israeli Occu-
pied West Bank and Gaza Strip.
After 20 years of brutal Israeli mili-
tary occupation, an organized and
unified movement brought new hope
and inspiration to the Palestinian
people.
The intifada has been a cohesive
rallying point for U.S. activists. In-
creased media coverage of the daily
atrocities committed against Pales-
tinians, and the uncompromising in-
sistence that the Palestine Liberation
Organization (PLO) is their sole le-
gitimate representative, has fostered
a new dialogue in the United States.
For the University of Michigan,
Ann Arbor, December, 1985 marked
the formation of a local chapter of
the Palestine Solidarity Committee
(PSC).
As a student organization on
campus, PSC has sponsored lectures
and forums educating people about
the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Last
year's speakers included Israel Sha-
hak, head of the Israeli League for
Human and Civil Rights; and PLO
representative Maha Khoury, who
participated in a panel discussion
with representatives from the African.
National Congress and El Salvador's
Farabundo Marti National Liberation
Front.
Last summer, a group of local ac-
tivists participated in a fact-finding

delegation to the West Bank and
Gaza Strip sponsored by PSC and
the Michigan Student Assembly. As
part of the delegation, participants
established initial sister university
ties with the West Bank's Bir Zeit
University, as mandated by MSA.
Fearing increased student participa-
tion in the intifada, Israeli authori-
ties closed Birzeit in early 1988, and
since then many students and faculty
leaders have been jailed.
PSC sent two more representa-
tives on a national delegation this
summer, where they worked to
strengthen ties with Bir Zeit. These
students will participate in campus
educational forums throughout the
coming academic year. PSC feels it-
is imperative that students be edu-
cated about the struggles of Univer-
sity students who are oppressed by
the U.S.-backed Israeli government.
As part of this educational
outreach, PSC constructed a shanty
on the Diag. It represents the condi-
tions under which the Palestinians
have been forced to live as a result of
Israel's military occupation. It has
consistently been the target of racist
vandalism. The shanty will continue
to stand until the occupation ends
and an independent Palestinian state
is established.
PSC believes peace in the region
will come only when the right of all
people to self determination is rec-
ognized. The first step toward this
must be the establishment of an in-

dependent Palestinian state in the
West Bank and Gaza Strip with East
Jerusalem as its capital.
Nationally, PSC has a set of
principles around which it is united.
The first is an opposition to United
States intervention in the Middle
East. PSC opposes the massive
buildup of U.S. military force in the
region. This force is used to sup-
press the right of the peoples of the
region to determine their own des-
tinies and take control over their
natural resources.
PSC calls for an immediate end
to all U.S. aid to Israel. $4 billion
in U.S. aid per year funds Israel's
military expansion and illegal set-
tlements in the region, and the
buildup of its armaments industry
which exports heavily to South
Africa, Central America, and
throughout Asia, Africa, and Latin
America.
PSC supports the right of the
Palestinian people to self-determina-
tion, to return to their homeland, and
to establish an independent state. In-
cluding their choice of the PLO as
their sole legitimate representative.
Finally, PSC opposes all forms
of racial and religious discrimina-
tion. They oppose the Law of Re-
turn by which Jewish citizens of any
other country can easily attain Israeli
citizenship while Palestinians cannot
return to Palestine.
Ruttenberg is an LSA junior and
a former member of the PSC.

*0

Despite FBI surveillance
LASC continues its struggle

Another MIchigan
Cash Crop.

by the Latin American
Solidarity Committee
According to the FBI:
"The Latin American Solidarity
Committee was formed to organize
an ongoing committee in solidarity
with the oppressed peoples of Latin
America; to support their democratic
revolutionary and national liberation
movements; to support their strug-
gles against repressive and authori-
tarian regimes; to support the strug-
gles to establish truly popular and
representative governments, which
meet the needs of the people; to in-
crease awareness among those around
us, of the contemporary realities of
Latin America and the role of the
United States in perpetuating these
realities; and to put pressure on the
United States Government in a vari-
ety of ways to change its military,
political and economic policies vis-
a-vis Latin America." [From an FBI
document obtained under the Free-
dom of Information Act. The docu-
ment was dated July 18, 1986, and
was sent from the Detroit office to
the FBI Director, in Washington,
D.C. It was labelled "secret."]
That's not a bad description of
LASC, although -the reader may be
wondering why the FBI keeps tabs
on our activities, as well as those of
hundreds of groups like us around
the country. We like to think it's be-
cause LASC is effective at what it
does.
Part of our job is to educate
people, and the FBI's spying seems
to have helped us in this regard.
Many people did not know that we
had a political police force in the
United States, and were genuinely
shocked to see the FBI's files on

LASC's constitutionally protected1
activities. It seems that our govern-)
ment's efforts to subvert democracyr
around the world have some ramifi-I
cations for our own democraticr
rights in the U.S.
But FBI surveillance has not pre-r
vented LASC from becoming one of)
the largest and most active politicalr
organizations at the University. WeN
have used a wide variety of tactics tor
achieve our ends, including protests,I
lobbying, educational events, elec-c
toral action, and fund-raising for sur-s
vivors of U.S. aggression in Centralf
America.i
On campus, for example, suc-t
cessful protests have prevented the
CIA from recruiting through univer-c
sity facilities since 1984. This is af
good example of the potential powert
of protest against an institution thatI
has little legitimacy. The CIA'sr
complicity in mass murder and othert
human rights abuses, training terror-c
ists, and overthrowing democrati-F
cally elected governments is welln
documented. As a result, they havef
often chosen to cancel their inter-c
views on campus, in spite of theI
complete backing of the University,f
simply to avoid any more light be-
ing shed on their grisly record. One
recruiter canceled his appearance afters
LASC promised to photograph then
recruits and forward their names to1
the United Nations Commission onv
War Crimes.F
Other adversaries have proven tod
be more stubborn. Carl Pursell, oura
U.S. representative for Michigan'st
second congressional district, at firstv
ignored the thousands of letters ande
phone calls he got opposing U.S.
intervention in Central America. He 1
tried to ignore the hundreds of people c
arrested for civil disobedience at hisr
office (that wasn't easy). He didn'th
get the message when Ann Arbort
voters approved the Central Americac
Peace Initiative in 1986. That city1
ballot proposal called for an end to e

U.S. intervention in all of Central
America, and established a sister city
relationship with Juigalpa,
Nicaragua. Finally a LASC activist
ran against him and took 41% of the
vote (including 60% of Ann Arbor),
mainly on the issue of Central
America. He still supports the ad-
ministration, although last May he
voted for an amendment that would
restrict military aid to El Salvador.
The vote was largely symbolic, be-
cause the entire bill was overturned
shortly thereafter; but perhaps the
pressure from LASC and the solidar-
ity movement is finally beginning
to get to him.
Most of LASC's efforts are not
confrontational, but educational:
films, speakers, leaflets, guerrilla
theater, etc. We encourage debate,
but it is difficult to get our oppo-
nents to publicly defend their ac-
tions. The CIA will not debate any-
one, as a matter of policy. Carl
Pursell has refused to hold a public
meeting with his constituents for
five years now. We have invited lo-
cal news media (Ann Arbor News,
Detroit Free Press) to participate in
forums on media coverage of Central
America many times, but it seems
they are aware that their coverage is
systematically distorted and they do
not wish to make an issue of it. In
1985, after six months of pleading;
we finally got the U.S. State De,
partment to send a representative to q
debate we sponsored. Although the
audience was exceedingly polite;
their spokesperson did not do very
well, and it is doubtful that they will
ever send another.
LASC is currently working on a
boycott of Folger's coffee, which
contains Salvadoran beans. An ex-
port tax on coffee provides about
half of the revenues for the budget of
the Salvadoran government. The
other half, more than a million dol-
lars a day, comes from U.S. taxpay-
ers. More than 70,000 civilians have
been murdered by the Salvidoran
military and related death squads in
See LASC, Page 8

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