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>JN May 1, 1997, Vol. 5, Number 78
Mordechai Confirms Syrian Nerve Gas Threats
Minister of Defense Yitzchak Mordechai confirmed that Syria has
completed development of a new type of nerve gas, one with which
current Israeli gas masks and other precautionary measures cannot
safely deal. He emphasized, however, that he would not recommend
that Syria "start up with us." The IDF spokesman announced that
the army is prepared to deal with a large range of threats upon the
Syria Denies Nerve Gas Allegations
Syria is denying Israeli allegations deadly nerve gas was put
in missiles capable of hitting the Jewish state. Haaretz had
reported Tuesday that Syria obtained the chemicals for the nerve
gas from Russia and recruited a Russian expert to help manufacture
the deadly gas.
Al-Baath, the paper of Syria's ruling Baath party, accused Israel
of a "misleading campaign" to draw attention from its tough stances
toward the Arabs that have helped stall the Middle East peace
Pollard Files Suit Against Israeli Gov't
The "file a petition with the Israeli Supreme Court" rage has
reached North Carolina. Jonathan Pollard, an Israeli citizen who
has been imprisoned for the past 12 years on charges of espionage,
filed suit with the Supreme Court Wednesday, demanding that the
Israeli government explain what it has done in order to bring about
In addition, Pollard demands to know why Israel has never declared
that he was an Israeli agent. Pollard's wife, Esther, says that
Prime Minister Netanyahu has not fulfilled any of his promises to
Pollard. Larry Dub, attorney for Pollard, told Arutz-7 that his
client had always been told that he would be freed after 10 years
in prison, and he has now despaired of the government fulfilling
Pollard, 42, a former U.S. Navy analyst, is serving a life sentence
for passing U.S. military secrets to Israel. He has been in jail in
the United States since 1985. Pollard's wife Esther told Israel
army radio that Israel has not done enough to release her husband,
who is suffering from arthritis and developing glaucoma.
Pollard's petition also accuses the Israeli government of "breach
of promise" for refusing to continue funding Pollard's defense and
supporting his wife.
Pollard is currently being held at the Federal Correctional
Institution in Butner, N.C. President Clinton rejected a
clemency plea by Pollard in July 1996, citing the enormity of
Pollard's crime, his lack of remorse and the damage he caused U.S.
NIS 1 Billion for Roads to Circumvent Autonomy Areas
By Eitan Rabin (Courtesy of Ha'aretz)
Defense officials have prepared a plan to build new roads in the
West Bank, intended to allow Israelis to avoid parts of the area
under autonomous control of the Palestinian Authority.
The plan, prepared by the settlement division of the Defense
Ministry, would cost NIS 1 billion to carry out. It has not yet
received budgetary approval but if accepted would require
expropriating land from Palestinians.
The plan calls for paving additional "autonomy circumvention roads"
and thoroughfares in addition to the 24 roads laid out just before
Israel's partial redeployment in the West Bank under interim
agreements with the Palestinians during the previous Labor
Ben Gurion Airport to Close on Sabbath?
Transportation Minister Rabbi Yitzchak Levy has denied reports
that he plans to close Ben Gurion International Airport on Sabbath
and Jewish holidays. Levy said that there are considerations that
"transcend the sum written on a check; the Sabbath is one of the
most important values of the Jewish nation, and it must be
preserved." He said that within the framework of the status quo,
"each side gives a little: the secular public can't fly abroad on
Sabbath, and the religious public is forced to see immodestly-clad
women in the newspapers."
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