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Publisher\Editor Don Canaan

                       March 15, 1996 V4, #49
All the News the Big Guys Missed

Shimon Peres Introduces Bill Clinton

"Mr. President and ladies and gentlemen. Under the administration of President Clinton, this is the fourth important move that took place in the Middle East.

First, was the agreement -- the first agreement with the PLO; then the agreement with Jordan; then the second agreement with the PLO; now the fourth agreement in the Middle East, to confront terrorism.

Those are events that exceed any normal political achievement. The Palestinian conflict looked like insolvable. The Jordanians were not quick at the beginning to make peace and then it became a great success. Then we have encountered the danger to all this great achievements by acts of terror. In my eyes, President Clinton is the first world leader that put on the agenda peace in our time as the major goal.

If you look back at history, most of the time was spent on wars and cold wars and confrontations. Here is a chance for the first time to escape all the bitter histories of blood and terror. And, then, we have encountered again another uninvited and unprecedented problem: How to go ahead with peace when you have acts of terror. I think, yesterday, the foundation was laid down to do both mainly to go ahead with peace and reject terror.

May I tell you Mr. President that in our eyes you, your administration, the American Congress have changed the whole destiny of the Middle East. The importance of the Middle East is not just because it has produced religions and Bible. The importance of the Middle East that in our times this is the first testing ground to take many conflicts that were so difficult to solve and try to solve them. If you shall succeed, I think it may serve as a model to other places.

For us, President Clinton is really a great leader -- but not less than that -- a moving friend. He has a tear in eyes when we go through a difficult period of time and we have a tear in our eyes when we are listening reaction.

Thank you very much Mr. President."

Clinton Leaves for Washington

By David Borgida (VOA-Jerusalem)

President Clinton has concluded a visit to Israel on an inspirational note, telling Israelis they must continue to withstand the forces of terror if they hope to see a lasting Middle East peace. The president also pledged unwavering US support, calling on the US Congress to approve funds for advanced equipment to help Israel combat terrorism.

Clinton plunged into an appreciative crowd of young Israelis at the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center after urging them to carry on in the face of the Hamas-sponsored terror attacks that have killed more than 60 people. "It is the great challenge of your generation to overcome those fears, in perhaps the hardest place in the world to do it."

Earlier, he announced he is asking Congress to approve $100 million -- $50 million this year, $50 million next year -- so Israel can obtain advanced bomb detection equipment, thermal and radar sensors, X-ray equipment, and more, to combat terrorism.

His aim is to warn radical Islamic terrorists they cannot continue their campaign of violence, and to reassure worried Israelis they are not alone.

"We are determined to stand with you in that effort. We know that overcoming adversity is the genius of the Jewish people and the history of the State of Israel. No nation on earth knows better that the path of triumph often passes through tragedy. No people know better through millennia of exile and persecution, inquisition and pogroms, the ultimate evil of the Holocaust, that you must deny victory to oppressors."

The president had met during the day with Prime Minister Shimon Peres, opposition party leader Benjamin Netanyahu, and visited the gravesite of assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. There, to honor his friend, he followed Jewish custom, placing a stone he brought with him from the White House South Lawn.

The president arrived here from the summit of peacemakers in Sharm el Sheik, Egypt, a Red Sea resort known for its scuba diving. World and regional leaders -- except Lebanon and Syria -- agreed to work to combat terrorism. In his Tel Aviv speech, Clinton hailed the consensus achieved there, even though the Jerusalem Post editorialized Thursday the summit produced what it called "mindless platitudes."

The president also found himself denying suggestions from the opposition Likud Party his visit here was aimed at boosting Peres before the May 29 election. At a news conference, Clinton said he had no intention of interfering with the domestic Israeli political situation.

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