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>PD NOVEMBER 1, 1994, V2 #200
Former Chief Rabbi Goren Dies at 77
Rabbi Shlomo Goren, who became world famous as chief rabbi of
the Israeli army during the Six Day War, has died in Jerusalem at
the age of 77. It was during the 1967 fighting that Goren was
photographed reaching the Western Wall in Jerusalem and on the
summit of Mount Sinai. He later became chief rabbi, issuing a
series of humane - but at times - also controversial rabbinical
Waxman Tortured by Hamas Before Being Murdered
Reports now are surfacing that Nachshon Waxman was tortured
immensely before his murder at the hands of Hamas terrorists.
According to a report, Waxman's teeth had been knocked out and his
fingers cut off during his captivity.
No official confirmation of this report has been issued by the
military in Israel, however, Waxman's mother has apparently stated
that after seeing the videotape of her son in captivity she
realized that he was missing teeth, but the government of Israel
had asked her not to publicize this fact as it was afraid that this
could worsen Waxman's plight by making the terrorists feel that
Israelis were likely to consider his situation 'helpless.'
If Water Problem is Solved, Mideast Peace May Last
By Laurie Kassman (Casablanca)
The Casablanca economic summit is trying to put together a
framework for economic development in a peaceful Middle East. One
of the top priorities for the region is to find new water sources
amid warnings that the fight for water, not oil, could spark the
next regional battle.
The director-general of the Arab Fund for Economic and Social
Development warns that water, or the lack of it, could spark the
next war in the Middle East. Abdlatif al-Hamad says the region's
most serious challenge is the sharing of scarce water resources.
"This will be the single most important cause for political and
social friction by the turn of the century. The limitations of
this resource in the area are as great as the needs."
There are already disputes between Syria, Iraq and Turkey over
sharing of waterflow from Turkey. Jordan, Israel and the
Palestinian Autonomy areas are seeking ways to share the water of
the Jordan River and underground reservoirs that run beneath their
borders. The Casablanca summit devoted a two-hour discussion to
the issue. Participants raised questions about the rights of the
haves and have-nots and the need for water sharing across borders.
In an increasingly arid region, the search is on for the most
efficient and least costly water supplies -- from region-wide
transport of water through pipelines and canals to desalinization
The president of Israel's Ben-Gurion University Avishay Braverman
heads up a research team to find new water supplies. He says one
of the best options is to use second-hand water. "Why? Because
given the population growth and the urban sector creating so much
waste water and this waste water is completely destroying the
aquifer. So let's purify the waste water. When you purify the
waste water you can reuse it for agriculture."
In the Jordan Valley, Braverman says sea water too must provide new
supplies. "The solution lies in the sea. And this is the time for
us to assess the desalination of sea water, the cost is $1.10 per
cubic meter and can be brought done effectively and the expenditure
required for that (building the plants) for the next 50 years are
less than one year's defense expenditure for this area."
Braverman raises alarm bells about the urgent need to service
Palestinian consumers in Gaza where fresh water is in short supply.
"You have to create water for them immediately. I think you have
to invest immediately-- the international community -- in treating
sewage, in treating waste water and essentially create desalination
plants. Immediately and I think the international community should
help Gaza immediately."
The Israeli educator says the Middle East must exploit the natural
resources it does have, the sun, the sea and the desert -- the sun
for energy, the sea for water and the desert to house its expanding
population and leave the narrow strips of fertile area for growing
Christopher Expects Arab Boycott Will Soon End
By Ron Pemstein (Casablanca)
Secretary of State Warren Christopher says the United States has
achieved all of its objectives at the Casablanca economic summit
meeting; the Arab Boycott of Israel is starting to crumble and
Arab-Israeli business deals are being made.
When Christopher held talks at Jordan's villa here with Crown
Prince Hassan and Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres, he saw a
sign that a new day has arrived for the Middle East and North
"As I was leaving, I looked down in the garden and I saw a large
group of businessmen and women conversing very animatedly on the
lawn and it turned out to be a group of Israeli and Arab business
leaders who were doing the things that businessmen and women do
best of all, and that is to talk about important deals in the
The secretary says the United States has achieved all of its
objectives at this conference, winning approval for the concept of
a development bank for the Middle East and North Africa as well as
for a regional tourism board and a regional chamber of commerce.
One of the restrictions on trade between Israel and the Arabs has
been the Arab Boycott of Israel that started to crumble when Saudi
Arabia and the other five members of the Gulf Cooperation Council
ended aspects of their boycott.
Christopher told reporters the Arab League will meet early next
year and he expects the action by the Gulf countries to be approved by
the other members.
"I think there's a wide recognition here that the very idea of this
conference is inconsistent with the maintenance of the boycott.
The boycott is really a relic of the past and should be put behind
us. I think there's an understanding that is the fact and we're
just looking for the momentum to finally achieve an end to the
boycott completely because as I say it's inconsistent with the
business deals that are being discussed and done here and it's
inconsistent with the spirit and purpose of this conference. So I
would hope at the next meeting of the Arab League there would be a
strong move to end the boycott completely."
The primary boycott--direct trade between Arab countries and
Israel--is still observed on paper if not in practice. An Arab
diplomat says he expects a peace agreement between Israel and Syria
will mean the end of the Arab Boycott entirely. On other issues,
Christopher met with Yasir Arafat at the end of his two-day stay
The Secretary of State praised the Palestinian Authority for
establishing a six month budget and for keeping better accounting
of aid received in Gaza and Jericho. Christopher says the United
States will organize a donor's conference for mid-November to make
sure all pledges to the Palestinian Authority are paid in full.
Christopher took some time for sightseeing Monday. During his
excursion, Christopher paid tribute to Islam. He took a few moments
out from his bilateral meetings here to visit the monumental
Hassan, the second mosque completed last year on the shores of the
After his tour of the $550 million mosque and admiring its
200-meter-tall minaret, Christopher echoed President Clinton's
remarks to the Jordanian parliament last week that the United
States has no conflict with Islam.
"The United States respects Islam, that we reject the idea that
there is any necessary or fundamental conflict or hostility between
Islam (and us). Seeing this building and hearing it described
underscores, I think, the traditions of the religion are very
consistent with our very best traditions."
Israel May Consider Lebanon Cease Fire
By Al Pessin (Jerusalem)
Israel's prime minister has asked US mediators to look into a
cease-fire offer made by Lebanon's president, however the prime
minister is skeptical about the offer because of a key condition
attached to it. Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin says the
proposal by Lebanese President Elias Hrawi is "a non-starter"
if it requires Israel to commit to withdraw its forces from
southern Lebanon. Hrawi's proposal would appear to do just that.
In an interview with Egypt's Middle East News Agency, the Lebanese
president said he would establish a joint Israeli-Lebanese
committee to discuss the timetable for an Israeli withdrawal, if
Israel would promise in advance that it would, in the end, withdraw
its troops. Hrawi said he would guarantee a ceasefire while talks
were in progress.
But speaking Monday in Jerusalem, Rabin said he is not prepared to
commit to a withdrawal based solely on promises from President
Hrawi. He says the Lebanese government must first prove that it
could control southern Lebanon, keep it free from terrorism by the
Iran-backed group Hizbullah and prevent attacks on Israel across
"We made our position very clear vis a vis Lebanon in a context of
negotiations of signing a peace treaty in certain phases in which
we put them into a test for six months after they're deploying the
Lebanese army north of the security zone and proving that they can
dismantle Hizbullah and they can prevent any terror act, only then
we will be ready to negotiate and sign, within three months, in
addition to the six months.
Israel and its Lebanese Christian militia allies control an area
of southern Lebanon, some 6-9 miles wide, along the Israeli border.
There has been an increase in hostility in the area during the last
two weeks, including shelling in both directions and an attack by
Hizbullah forces on Saturday which killed an Israeli soldier at a
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