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>Israel Faxx
>JN May 5, 1998, Vol. 6, No. 84

Swiss Bank Settles with Holocaust Survivor

Israel Faxx Staff Report

A major Swiss bank said it settled a Holocaust survivor's claim that it hoarded her family's wealth when she could not produce a death certificate for her father, who perished in a Nazi death camp. The accord calls for Credit Suisse Group to pay an unspecified sum to Estelle Sapir, 80, who made headlines around the world with allegations that the bank turned her away coldheartedly when she sought her father's money after the war. In return, she will withdraw from a class-action suit against big Swiss banks filed in a U.S. court on behalf of thousands of Holocaust victims.

Israel Squeezes Pushers of U.S. Potency Pill

Israel Faxx Staff Report

Israel's Health Ministry said Monday it was investigating black market sales of Viagra, a U.S.-made treatment for impotence that has become one of the fastest-selling drugs in history. "The drug still has not been approved here. It is being brought to Israel on the black market. There has still been no request to authorize the drug," a ministry spokeswoman said. She said the ministry was investigating who placed an advertisement in the popular daily Yedioth Ahronoth for "the new erection pill from the United States."

Meetings Under Way in London

By Ron Pemstein (VOA-London)

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has met Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu twice and plans a second meeting with Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat as she extends her talks in London. Albright is remaining in London overnight and into the morning shuttling between separate meetings with the Israeli and Palestinian leaders. After the first round of meetings, State Department spokesman James Rubin says the Secretary is pushing for a decisive result.

Still the spokesman says there is no compelling evidence from Monday's meetings that Albright will be able to bridge the gap between the two sides. She is trying to get negotiations resumed after 14 months of impasse.

One possibility is to have a joint meeting here between the Israeli and Palestinian leaders, a step they have avoided because of disagreements about how much territory Israel should give to the Palestinians in the West Bank.

Israeli Artists Plan Protest

By IINS News Service

The Association of Israeli Artists plans to begin protest activities following last week's ordered cancellation of the scheduled performance of the Batsheva Dance Troop, at the Jubilee Bells gala presentation in Jerusalem. A large demonstration is scheduled Saturday evening in Tel Aviv's Rabin Square.

Leaders of AIA are calling for the establishment of a government-appointed committee to investigate the events that led up to the cancellation of the scheduled production in honor of Israel's 50th anniversary.

According to the artists, the ordered cancellation of the performance, during which the dancers, who were to be dressed in Chasidic garb, would strip down to their undergarments, was a result of the increasing religious coercion that exists in the country.

President Weizman was also reported to be in favor of doing away with the portion of the show during which the dancers undressed, which was removed from the live production that was aired around the world.

Among the leading voices pointing the finger of religious coercion was Tel-Aviv's Likud Mayor Roni Milo, who is a leader in the battle against the ultra-Orthodox in Israel. Milo called the decision an "unprecedented one," which he stated represented religious coercion, as well as a dangerous precedent of censorship, which was contrary to the principals of a democratic country.

Police Investigate Rabin Posters

By IINS News Service

A photomontage depicting former Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin in the nude, was pasted around a recreational area in the southern Jerusalem neighborhood of Talpiot by members of the outlawed right-wing Kach Party. The recreational area belongs to the left-wing Dor Shalom organization.

Persons identifying themselves as members of Kach took credit for the posters, which they put up in retaliation for the "blood libel" being carried out by the Israeli left, surrounding the controversial performance of the Batsheva Dance Troop at the Independence Day Jubilee Bells gala performance.

Israeli Humor

Bill Clinton pays a visit to Israel. Netanyahu takes him to see the Western Wall and explains it to him. Clinton walks up to the wall and says, "I pray that the Israelis and the Palestinians achieve total peace." He walks back to the prime minister, who says, "You know, when you pray to the Wall, you're praying directly to God."

Clinton walks back to the wall and says, "And I pray that the Israelis give back to the Palestinians all the land they captured in 1967." He walks back to Bibi, who says, "Now, you're talking to the wall."

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