Newsletter : 5fax1219.txt
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Publisher\Editor Don Canaan
Dec. 19, 1995, V3, #230
All the News the Big Guys Missed
For subscriptions or back issues, please contact POL management
'Zapruder' Video Records Rabin's Murder
By Patricia Golan (VOA-Jerusalem)
An amateur video tape showing the assassination of Israeli Prime
Minister Yitzhak Rabin has been sold to Israel's commercial
television channel and a daily newspaper. Meanwhile, the trial of
confessed assassin Yigal Amir begins today.
The video was made by a recent immigrant to Israel from Poland,
Gershon Shalvinsky, an amateur photographer from Tel Aviv.
Journalists who have seen the tape have called it shocking, showing
the killer hiding behind a potted plant before walking up to the
prime minister and shooting him in the back.
The photographer, whose identity has only just been made public,
made the film of the Tel Aviv peace rally and subsequent
assassination from the second floor of the Tel Aviv City Hall.
It is not clear why Shalvinsky waited for nearly a month before
disclosing the existence of the film. He handed it over to the
official commission of inquiry into the assassination.
Then, working through a lawyer, he announced the sale of the video.
After an intense bidding war, Israel commercial Channel Two,
together with the Hebrew daily Yediot Ahronot, bought domestic
rights to the film for a reported $400,000. Foreign rights will be
sold to the highest bidder.
The video is being compared to the footage of the JFK assassination
in 1962 which was also filmed by an amateur, Abraham Zapruder.
Channel Two's news director says the film may be shown today, the
day confessed assassin Yigal Amir goes on trial.
Meanwhile, the commission of inquiry investigating the murder of
Rabin has sent warnings to seven top security men that they could
be harmed by the findings of the inquiry. Among the seven is the
head of the Shin Bet Security Service. The formal warnings mean the
men could be indicted and are advised to hire attorneys.
Non-Jewish Asian Women Immigrating to Israel
By Yaroslav Trofimov (The London Observer)
On a Tel Aviv park bench, a group of elderly Israelis chat in
Yiddish or Hebrew. On another bench, young Filipino women
converse in Tagalog, glancing occasionally at their elderly
charges. These young women are known as live-in nurses. In recent
years, some 12,000 such nurses, mostly from the Philippines but
also from Thailand, Colombia and Poland, have been imported to care
for aging Holocaust survivors and battle-scarred veterans of
European and Middle Eastern wars.
The employment of authorized Filipino caregivers is heavily
subsidized by Israeli social security. Manila-born Gemma Bautista
receives a $550 monthly paycheck from the Israeli pension system
for the full-time care of Chana Operot, a 76-year-old Moscow-born
widow suffering from Alzheimer's disease.
The popularity of foreign nurses has caught the imagination of
Israeli Minister of Health Ephraim Sneh who last month announced he
wanted the caregivers to become a permanent feature of the Israeli
national health system.
The new plan would end admissions to government nursing homes for
Israelis who could be taken care of instead in their own
According to Arik Moshe, the ministry's economic affairs adviser,
a live-in nurse would cost the Ministry $600 a month in salary plus
$600 in medicine and food for the patient, compared to the $2,000
a month it costs to keep a patient in the government home. Apart
from being cheaper, this system would be better for the patients'
mental state. It would allow them to remain in comfortable and
familiar home surroundings," Moshe said.
Sneh's initiative, the first such scheme in the Western world, drew
an angry reaction from the Ministry of Labor, which approves work
permits for foreign nurses. In recent months, a surge in demand for
caregivers has meant around 500 visa requests a week. "What is
this?" sneered Labor Minister Ora Namir. "Everyone who feels
slightly unwell suddenly wants a Filipino nurse."
Namir recently launched a campaign to curb the growing influx of
foreign, mostly Thai, Filipino and Romanian, guest workers, who
already number more than 100,000, up from just 5,000 in 1992.
According to Labor Ministry officials, Sneh's plan, if fully
implemented, would bring up to 70,000 caregivers to Israel.
"This is becoming a grave social problem. Short-term it will
increase unemployment and long-term it seems that many of these
Filipinos will manage to stay in Israel permanently, by marrying or
otherwise," a Labor Ministry spokesman said.
But it seems that Sneh's dollars-and-sense logic will carry the
day. This month, when most of Israel's government-run hospitals
have closed down due to a budget crunch, few in the Israeli Cabinet
can afford to oppose a 40 percent saving on health care.
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