Newsletter : 5fax0510.txt
| Previous file
| Next file
Publisher\Editor Don Canaan
May 10, 1995, V3, #86
All the News the Big Guys Missed
For subscriptions or back issues, please contact POL management
AIPAC: The Iran Threat
By Ed Warner (Washington)
At the annual meeting of AIPAC (the American Israel Public Affairs
Committee), the threat from Iran was a major topic. Uri Lubrani, a
former Israeli ambassador to Iran, said the world too soon forgets
all the trouble caused by Iran. He recalled many instances of
terrorism for his audience at the conference:
"They should serve us all as a poignant reminder of the evil,
pernicious, dangerous nature of this regime. Try to remember the
nightmare of atomic bombs in the hands of fanatic, utterly
irresponsible, unpredictable and unscrupulous lot in Tehran.
Believe me, they are capable of anything. Attempts to engage in
dialogue must be over. The only way to deal with this evil
phenomenon is through condemnation, isolation and effective
Other speakers suggested Iran is not quite so dangerous, given
its economic problems. Martin Kramer, professor of Middle
Eastern Studies at Tel Aviv university, said Iran is not able to
spend as much as it would like on followers abroad because of so
many problems at home:
"Because the clerics have more or less capped funding for all
Islamic causes, they're always looking for ways to maximize the
impact of the money that they do spend. As a rule, Iranian funds
move away from movements which are defeated or domesticated and
move toward those groups and organizations which are pursuing
active jihad, which would be defined by many of us as
straightforward terrorism. Hence, the paradox: Iran is not
expanding its support for Islamic movements, but the money it does
spend is systematically reinvested in conflict wherever it is most
For example, said Kramer, Iran has switched funds from Hizbullah in
Israeli-occupied southern Lebanon to Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the
Rabin Discusses Iran
By Daud Majlis (Washington)
Israel's prime minister says as the strongest nation in the Middle
East his country can take calculated risks for peace which is being
constantly threatened by the extremist groups like the Islamic
Jihad and the Hamas.
Rabin categorically stated that no Israeli was killed by the
people who are under the authority of Chairman Yasir Arafat since
the Declaration of Principles was signed in Washington between the
PLO and Israel in 1993. The Israeli leader said there is no terror
without a political purpose. The Palestinian Authority, he noted,
is now beginning to realize that it has to cope with terrorism
conducted by these extremists.
"We also look to the threats to the region. The threats are by
extreme, ugly, fundamentalistic Islamic terror wave that I call
Khomeinism without Khomeini. It covers the whole Middle East. It
is not a problem to us. If there is a danger to stability,
tranquility and peace in the region it is not only in the context
of the Arab-Israeli conflict."
The Israeli leader said Iran is a danger not only to Israel but
to the stability and tranquility of a region in which rest of the
world is involved.
Aipac: Gingrich on Jerusalem;
Iran May Nuke Chicago or Atlanta
By Ed Warner (Washington)
One of the main objectives of the American Israel Public Affairs
Committee is to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,
a project involved in considerable controversy. At a luncheon
during the annual AIPAC conference in Washington, Speaker of the
House Newt Gingrich offered his support for the transfer.
Gingrich said if the Russians wanted to move the U.S. Embassy
from Moscow to St. Petersburg or the Germans wanted to shift it
from Bonn to Berlin, the United States would have to say these
countries can choose their own capital. The same thing, he said,
applies to Israel: "Now I am told that if we were to set the
embassy up there tomorrow that this would cause enormous unrest
among those of their neighbors who would like to destroy Israel.
Well, I'm frankly not very sympathetic to that. And part of my
reaction is they ought to grow up. Israel is a sovereign nation.
The dominant power on the planet, the leader of the world is
committed unequivocally to the survival of Israel, and we will
take those steps that are necessary, working with the free people
of Israel, to assure their survival."
Gingrich pledged to pass legislation in the House of
Representatives that will move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. Yet
reports indicate the Israeli government is not happy about the
move, fearing it would jeopardize the already endangered peace
process. Muslims, too, lay claim to Jerusalem and vehemently
object to putting the Israeli capital there.
According to the Israeli press, an official who accompanied Prime
Minister Yitzhak Rabin to Washington said the move may be a plot by
the opposition Likud party to derail the peace process.
Palestinians also object to the continuing Israeli expropriation
of land around Jerusalem and elsewhere in the West Bank. The
New York Times writes: "To many palestinians, who regard
Jerusalem's eastern precincts as the capital of their hoped for
state, there will be little land left to negotiate if Israel is
allowed to keep building on it."
In his speech, Gingrich said more is involved than just Israel,
which is the front line defense against Islamic terrorism: "If you
want to imagine a catastrophic future, imagine Turkey and Egypt
becoming dominated in the manner of Iran. There is an immediate,
direct national security, interest in finding a way to deal with
Iran and either moderate that government or guarantee that it never
gets nuclear weapons that will allow it to establish blackmail and
a strangle hold on the oil supply of the world and be in a position
in the short run to annihilate Tel Aviv and in the long run to
annihilate Chicago or Atlanta."
Gingrich proposed establishing a joint Israeli-Jordanian free trade
zone that would demonstrate the value of cooperation among ethnic
groups and perhaps temper the world's many ethnic conflicts.
Israel: 62 Percent of Expropriated Land is Jewish-Owned
By Patricia Golan (Jerusalem)
Several countries have protested Israel's plans to expropriate land
in east Jerusalem. Jordan and Morocco say their relations with
Israel could be damaged if Israel goes ahead with the
confiscations, and the PLO has threatened to go to the UN Security
Council over the issue.
The heated debate erupted last month when Israel announced its
decision to confiscate about 130 acres of land in mainly Arab east
Jerusalem to build new Jewish neighborhoods. Israel captured the
eastern sector of Jerusalem from Jordan in 1967, and immediately
annexed it into its capital. Palestinians claim east Jerusalem as
their future capital.
While the city's status is to be discussed in later negotiations
between Israel and the Palestinians, Israel continues to build
and expand the city.
In a personal message to Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin,
King Hassan of Morocco warned that the move could prove a bombshell
for the Middle East peace process. And Jordan's ambassador to
Israel told the foreign ministry that if Israel does not reverse
its decision, Jordan will be forced to take measures that will harm
Foreign Minister Shimon Peres says it is a distortion to say Arab
land is being confiscated for Jewish housing. Rather, he says it
is more a matter of re-zoning land for housing, some of which
will be constructed for Arab residents of the city. Peres concedes
authorities should have been more sensitive about the way in which
the expropriation was announced, but says the decision must stand
so Israel will not appear to be retreating on the issue of
Peres says 62 percent of the land being confiscated at this time
belongs to Jews, and all landowners -- Jews and Arabs -- will be
compensated. Palestinians dispute the government figures, saying
a majority of the land is Arab-owned. Israel's claim to Jerusalem
has received a boost from the US Senate leader Bob Dole, who is
introducing legislation to move the US Embassy in Israel from Tel
Aviv to Jerusalem. Many countries have embassies in Tel Aviv.
The Clinton administration says the move would be provocative,
but Dole disagrees, saying that Israel is the only country which is
being denied the right to decide its own capital city.
Israeli government officials refuse to comment on the proposed
embassy move, saying it is an internal American matter. They
know that the transfer of the US Embassy, even to west Jerusalem
as is planned, will further anger the Palestinians.
(All material on these web pages is © 2001-2012
by Electronic World Communications, Inc.)