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Publisher\Editor Don Canaan

                       July 5, 1996 V4, #121
All the News the Big Guys Missed

The Insipid Norway-Palestinian Connection

By Permission of the International Christian Embassy

Twenty-five years ago he committed himself to erasing the Jewish state from the face of the Middle East.

On May 13, Norwegian foreign minister Bjorn Tore Godal arrived to see the deployment of Norwegian "peacekeeping" troops in Hebron - to seethe beginning of the end of Jewish rule over the first Jewish city.

On May 4, the Norwegian newspaper Dagen exposed a 25-year-old commitment by leading figures in Norway's ruling Labor Party to support and facilitate the demise of a sovereign Jewish Israel, and to establish in its place a secular, liberal Palestinian state.

The report showed that Norwegian Labor Party leaders agree with Arafat's ultimate aim: the removal of the Jewish state in the Middle East and its replacement by a secular Palestinian state.

Twenty-five years ago, the man who is today Norway's Minister of Foreign Affairs committed the Labor Party Youth to removing the Jewish State from the Middle East. That commitment paved the way for the Oslo Accords.

.By giving Norway the "honor" of hosting the secret talks with the PLO, Israel in its thirst for peace unwittingly played into the hands or those committed to Israel's dissolution as a sovereign Jewish state.

Dagen centered its report on revelations in a book by Haakon Lie, a former secretary-general of Norway's Labor Party and well-known in Israel as a strong friend of the Jewish state.

Lie revealed that, at the 1971 national convention of the Labor Party's Youth Organization, chairman Bjorn Tore Godal approved the following statement: "The AUF will support the forces which struggle for the national and social liberation of the Palestinian people.

The qualification for lasting peace must be that Israel ceases to exist as a Jewish state, and that a progressive Palestinian state is established where all ethnic groups can live side by side in complete equality."

Godal is today Norway's minister of foreign affairs, and a strong advocate of a Palestinian state. When confronted with his words, Godal told Dagen: "It is irrelevant what I meant at that point because the situation has changed."

Dagen traced the course set by the AUF statement and pursued in the ensuing years by various Labor Party politicians, among them Thorvald Stoltenberg, Knut Frydenlund, and Norway's present Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland.

Stoltenberg was foreign minister when the secret Israel-PLO talks began in January 1993. (He was also the brother-in-law of the late Johan Joergen Holst, foreign minister when the Oslo Agreement was signed). Ten years before, he and then foreign minister Frydenlund visited Arafat in Tunisia, returning to persuade their Labor colleagues "there is no reason to doubt Arafat's willingness to sit at the negotiating table."

Frydenlund had wanted Arafat to visit Oslo, but Swedish Prime Minister Olef Palme got the invitation in first, so the chairmen of the Scandinavian Labor parties met Arafat in Stockholm in April 1983, after which Brundtland told the press: "Arafat is...a knowledgeable and interesting person...It is not an extremist I have met with."

Dagen recalled that the conclusion reached by Palme, and by Denmark's Prime Minister Anker Jorgensen, was equally clear. "Israel was the problem preventing peace in the Middle East."

Thus, writes Dagen, 12 years after meeting Arafat, Norway watched as Prime Minister Brundtland "leads Yasir Arafat by the hand on the red carpet when he comes to receive the Nobel Prize for Peace.

Leif Wellerop, a Norwegian journalist and representative for the International Christian Embassy, believes the Dagen report answers all those who have wondered why Norway involved itself so heavily in the past three years in making the PLO and Arafat politically palatable.

"For those aware of the traditionally good and friendly relationship between Israel and Norway, and specifically too between Israel and the Norwegian Labor Party," says Wellerop, "it has been 'hard to understand what lay behind the efforts to politically clean up the Middle East chief-terrorist as a main player in what is today known around the world as the Oslo process."

Lie "makes it easier to understand what has led the present Norwegian government and the Norwegian Labor Party to act as a locomotive in the process that is about to place Israel in the greatest danger since the country was reborn 48 years ago.

"I believe the present Israeli leadership adopted this process in its yearning for peace, security and stability," adds Wellerop. "Our hope is that this report will open their eyes to the misery that Israel is heading towards if the country keeps on following the rolling tracks laid out for the Jewish state, and so regrettably named after the Norwegian capital."

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