Page 10-Tuesday, August 23, 1982-The Michigan Daily
Israeli success spawns debate
c-.uwuea Trom Page 5)
On the coastal road between Sidon
and Tyre, a tiny procession picked its
way among a stalled column of Israeli
armor. A man and woman in Arab
dress plodded along, leading a donkey
carrying an old man who clutched a
white rag on a pole.
In a recent interview in Sidon,
Ghassan Hardar, who was acting
governor of Southern Lebanon, studied
the floor and slowly clicked his worry
"WE ARE destroyed," he said. "We
Prime Minister Menachem Begin of
Israel pressed the war despite his
minority backing in the Knesset
(parliament). Labor Party leaders'
agreed to the original plan to seize a 25-
mile band, placing Galilee out of
Palestinian shelling range.
The Cabinet approved the advance,
stage by stage, but rifts grew serious
when Israeli forces threatened to
assault urban Beirut, which would add
far wider dimensions to the war.
INTERNATIONAL opinion ranged
from outrage at the over-reaction and
danger to long-term peace to relieved
admiration at the swift decimation of
Inside Israeli-held territory, reaction
is equally mixed.
At the Christian village of Seit, miles
up the mountain from the coast below
Beirut, residents fell on visiting news
correspondents and their Israeli escort
with unfeigned joy.
FOR SEVEN years, they claimed,
Palestinians and Syrians had bullied
them, stealing cars at roadblocks and
beating up young men who did not ex-
"I want them all to be killed," said
one young man, who asked not to be
identified just in case the Palestinians
or Syrians ever get back."The Isralis
can stay as long as they want."
As the visitors left, villagers pressed
a crate of apricots on them, and one
elder squeezed the Israeli officer's
hand: "Come back. Every day."
IN NABATIYEH, however, a teacher
reflected the opposite view:
"It is calmer now, maybe. But we are
occupied again, just like under the
Palestinians. The Israelis want peace
A PALESTINIAN family crouches amidst the rubble of their bombed-out home Friday to cook a meal. Palestinian and
Lebanese civilians are caught between Israeli bombs and PLO guerrillas.
for Galilee so they have colonized port for Zionism, said: "Oh, God, I wish,
Southern Lebanon for their peace." they would stop."
Among Israelis, shades of opinion The men doing the fighting are less
reach the extremes, most saying they divided.
are happy to have Palestinians farther "THIS IS war, and war is like this,"
from the northern border but that the said a major, normally a reporter for a
loss of Israeli lives is a bitter blow. large metropolitan daily in Israel.
In the Israeli town of Maalot, scene of "You can't just knock on doors and say
the 1974 terrorist massacre of school politely, 'Excuse me, sir, are there any
children and until the invasion within terrorists inhere?'"
range of Palestinian guns, Mayor Army officers note, with some pride,
Salmon Bohbot takes ahard line. that untested young reserves did so
"WE WON'T have peace until the well, carrying on traditions of glory
United States and Russia let us finish dating back to Israel's 1948 war of in-
alone what has to be done." dependence.
In Jerusalem, an American-born "The kids fought this one," said one
Israeli who helps mobilize world sup- veteran. "They did all right, yes?"
Letterman's extravagant 'Late Night'
(Continued from Page7)
the risque (sex therapist Ruth
Weisenhiemer) to the sublime rocker-t
turned-evangelist Wayne Cochran who
forced Letterman to let him sing a song
called "I Been Born Again" which had,
a surprising spiritual intensity.
Of course, sometimes things get out
of hand. Last week Letterman hosted
Andy Kaufman and Jerry Lawler, a
comedian who wrestles and the
wrestler who nearly broke Kaufman's
neck. As the interview progressed,
-Kaufman demanded an apology from
his former combatant. An argument
ensued and Lawler apparently knocked
Kaufman out of his chair. Letterman
Late Night even has its own mascot.
He's a mid-50s dumpy sort of guy who
answers to the name of Larry 'Bud'
Melman. At the end of many shows
Melman's paste flesh face appears on
the screen to solemnly announce "this
has been a Melman production." This
master of marshmellowness con-
inually 'appears during commercialt
breaks clad in a bus driver's overall to
give "one of my five reasons why you
should ride a Melman bus." While
Henry Block eats his heart out, Melman
boasts of "no bus lag on a Melman bus"
... that includes both of them.
Late Night is the replacement for
Tom Snyder's Tomorrow show which,
for all its faults,was an excellent presen-
ter of great and near-great rock bands.
While he was perhaps a better inter-
viewer, Snyder's brusque cigarette-
tinged style just didn't sit well during
the mellow late night hours. Letterman
is a more easily digestible alternative
who slides through a show while Snyder
poked and plunged through one.
An evening with Snyder was like
downing a plate full of hot tamales
while an hour of Letterman is like sit-
ting down.in an easy chair with a mug
of hot chocolate.
But Letterman doesn't take it easy.
He takes chances. Perhaps one of the
more gutsy maneuvers on television is
something held over from the first Let-
terman talk show.
- - Audience. members .with. personal
problems approach a microphone to
relate their sticky situations.
Each problem could be solved, but
only if the audience member has the
guts to tell someone else (usually at
home) the truth. The person with the
most interesting problem is selected
and Letterman acts as the messenger
of bad news.
In one case Letterman acted as a
reverse cupid telling a young woman
that the object of her desire would not
be taking her on a promised vacation.
Each time Letterman plays with an
emotional powderkeg (or it seems that
way) without getting burned, and the
results are always funny.
"Late Night" may not always work,
but at least there is someone on the air
who is always taking chances.
Television has had too many hyped per-
formers and precious few really funny,
very personal personalities. Letterman
bridges the gap between "Saturday
Night Live" farce and the caricature
that Snyder's "Tomorrow" grew into.
Whether you take "Late Night" lying
down or sitting up, it is definitely worth
waiting up for.
Israeli forces were helped by new
technology, allowing them to foil Syrian
missiles, and such new equipment as
the Merkava Charriot tank. Past tac-
tics were analyzed and refined.
THEY MOVED in so fast the
Palestinians had little chance to
mobilize their own heavy arsenal.
Hundreds of tons of weaponry were
seized in underground bunkers, much
of it still crated and wrapped in plastic.
But, for most Israeli army officers,
the difference was people.
According to the International In-
stitute for Strategic Studies in London,
Israel's standing army numbers only
135,000. But the institute notes, 400,004
more can be mobilized in 24 hours.
VISITORS to the front never know
whom theywill find. One reporter stop-
ped to chat with a colonel, leaning
against a dusty truck, with a .45 slung
over his shoulder.
"Well, I'm only reserve," he said.
"Actually, my last job was consul
general in New York."
A military police major encountered
in Lebanon was working in an Israeli
factory office just five days before.
WITH A phone call, hairdressers in
Haifa and students in Beersheba sud-
denly became paratroopers, storming
towns under heavy fire.
The main question now is when the
Israelis will leave. The government in-
sists that will be as soon as it is guaran-
teed that someone else with sufficient
force will keep Palestinians away from
Israeli troops stayed three months in
1978 until the U.N. Interim Forces in
Lebanon were in place. But few Israeli
officers consider the 7,000 U.N. blue
berets an effective force.
Some Lebanese predict the Israelis
will never leave. Some Israelis think
they'll return home soon. But both
agree that they will not be out any
faster than they got in.