Newsletter : 5fax0204.txt
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49 Years Later - A Presidential Pardon is Granted
After 49 years, President Moshe Katsav, Thursday, pardoned Meir Moses, who was found
guilty by a military court of revealing classified information. Moses fell into Syrian
captivity in 1954 and was charged and convicted with providing the enemy with information.
Katsav accepted the recommendations of Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz and IDF Chief of Staff
Lt.-Gen. Moshe Ya'alon to pardon Moses, who will be returned to his former rank of
Israel Approves Palestinian Prisoner Release, Troop Pullout from Jericho
By VOA News & Ha'aretz
Israel's security cabinet has approved a plan to release 900 Palestinian prisoners and
withdraw troops from the Palestinian town of Jericho. The plan calls for Israel to free
500 Palestinians after next week's Israeli-Palestinian summit, and 400 others over the
next three months. About 8,000 Palestinians are in Israeli custody. The Palestinians
Thursday rejected the offer to release the prisoners as a gesture to Palestinian Authority
Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, calling it "insulting."
The Israeli criteria for release are the same as in previous prisoner releases, meaning
that no one with "blood on his hands" (i.e. who killed an Israeli) would be freed. This
restriction aroused the Palestinians' ire at a meeting with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's
adviser, Dov Weisglass, later in the day.
"This is an insulting proposal," a Palestinian involved in the meeting said. "You're
hurting Abu Mazen [i.e. Abbas] rather than coming toward him. You need to release all 237
prisoners jailed before the  Oslo Accords. That's what's important to us - not the
900 you are proposing. You aren't coordinating the names with us."
The Palestinians - Saeb Erekat, Mohammed Dahlan and Hassan Abu Libdeh - said the
proposal should be reconsidered. But the Israelis, headed by Weisglass, said that this was
the final offer: No additional prisoners would be freed, and none with "blood on their
The crisis over the prisoner releases was largely predictable, since this is an ideal
time for the Palestinians to demand additional Israeli concessions: Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice arrives Sunday, and a four-way summit between Sharon, Abbas, Egyptian
President Hosni Mubarak and King Abdullah of Jordan is scheduled for Tuesday. Both Rice
and the summit participants are expected to press Israel on its gestures.
It is still unclear whether Rice also will attend the summit: The Palestinians want her
there, but Israel is unenthusiastic.
In addition to the prisoner releases, the diplomatic cabinet approved several other
Israeli gestures. First, Israel will gradually transfer five West Bank cities to
Palestinian control. Jericho will be handed over immediately, followed by Bethlehem,
Qalqilyah, Tul Karm and Ramallah. For now, however, Israel will retain control over
Hebron, Jenin and Nablus, which are considered greater security risks.
In addition, a joint Israeli-Palestinian committee, which will begin meeting next week,
will be set up to "launder" Palestinians wanted by Israel. In exchange for Israel not
pursuing these men, they will have to turn in their weapons to the PA, sign a pledge to
refrain from violence, and remain in their own cities, under PA supervision. However,
defense sources stressed, this is not an amnesty, and should the fighting resume, Israel
will renew its pursuit of these men.
Finally, Israel will allow the PA to build a seaport in Gaza, reopen the Karni
checkpoint between Israel and Gaza, and lift closures and other movement restrictions.
However, it will not allow the Dehaniyeh Airport to reopen.
Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres charged that the "blood on their hands" criterion was
outdated. But Binyamin Netanyahu demanded that no murderers be released. Sharon also
opposed freeing killers, though he hinted that Israel might make exceptions for elderly or
Sharon said that Abbas' election created an opportunity that Israel must seize. "Prisoner
releases and deals over wanted men are unpleasant, but we need to decide whether we want
to utilize this opportunity, or not," he said. "If there's a violation on their side, our
commitments will also be null and void."
Some Gaza Settlers Willing to Forfeit Israeli Citizenship
A number of Gush Katif settlers have come out with a new initiative: They want to
remain in their communities despite the disengagement plan and are even willing to forfeit
their Israeli citizenship for this purpose. The initiative comes from Avi Farhan, a
resident of Alei Sinai in the northern Gaza Strip and a Yamit evacuee. Farhan has been
joined by another two Alei Sinai families.
Farhan met Thursday with members of the Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee
who were on a tour of Gush Katif and told them of his initiative. "If it comes to a
situation in which the government of Israel gives up on me, I will give up on it," Farhan
said. "Despite the fact that I am a reserve colonel and the flag and state are very
important to me, with deep sorrow I will ask to hand back my Israeli citizenship
and remain in Alei Sinai as a refugee. We will also ask the UN to recognize us as such so
that the state won't have feelings of guilt or security responsibility for me. I have no
problem with living as a minority in a Palestinian state."
Farhan added, however, that if a national referendum came out in favor of the
disengagement plan, he would agree to leave the settlement without resistance. He said he
had already been in touch with legal advisers to review the option of waiving his Israeli
Eichmann-Capture Details Released for Publication
The secret details of the capture of Nazi mastermind Adolph Eichmann are now permitted
for publication - 45 years later. Eichmann was considered the Nazis' Chief Executioner,
responsible for the formulation of the Final Solution and the logistics of the Holocaust
slaughter. He was captured by U.S. troops after World War II, but managed to escape in
1946. He finally settled in Argentina in the 1950s with a secret identity. After an
arduous search, Israeli agents captured him in 1960, and clandestinely flew him to
Eichmann's trial began in February 1961, and brought out many aspects of the Holocaust
that had not been previously known in Israel or around the world. He was sentenced to
death, and was hanged - the only time the death penalty was carried out in Israel - on May
31, 1962. Isser Harel, head of the Mossad, Israel's intelligence agency, initiated,
planned and supervised the capture. Several years afterwards, he wrote a book with all the
details of the operation, but was forbidden to publish it in its entirety.
Now, however, Ma'ariv reports that the ban has been lifted. It is officially permitted
for publication that the Mossad was involved, and not "Jewish volunteers," as Israel then
claimed to Argentina. In addition, it can now be told officially that El Al Israel
National Airlines managers and employees played an active role in spiriting Eichmann to
Meir Amit, who succeeded Harel as head of the Mossad, did not want the book published,
for fear of the following details being known: methods by which the informer was
contacted, including using two halves of a torn bill of local currency; the special
photography equipment used in surveillance of Eichmann's home; methods by which the Mossad
agents spied on the house, such as through the hole of a canvas used to cover a car; the
constant renting out and switching of cars; the hideout built in the apartment used to
hide Eichmann for a week before he was flown to Israel; and more.
Historical researcher Doron Geller writes that Eichmann's trial, "with the recounting
of the ghastly crimes the Nazis perpetrated on the Jews, brought out a tumultuous
emotional response among the Israeli public and the Jewish people as a whole. Memories
that had been repressed burst forth in the courtroom. People screamed and cried and wanted
to attack and kill Eichmann in his bulletproof glass box.
The whole story of Eichmann's directing the 'final solution' came out into the open. He
asked for understanding and mercy from the Jewish people - claiming that he had acted
"under orders", that he was just a "cog in the machine", that he had only done as he had
been told... [But after] many centuries, those who had freely humiliated, ostracized,
deported, expelled, and murdered the Jews would be answerable for their crimes."
On Anniversary of End of Holocaust, Expert Writes Book on 'What We Knew'
Israel News Faxx Staff Report
Despite the ongoing murder of six million people, the average German led a rather
normal life for most of the years under Adolf Hitler's regime, according to a new book by
Holocaust authority and Central Michigan University history professor Eric Johnson.
Johnson's book, "What We Knew: Terror, Mass Murder, and Everyday Life in Nazi Germany,
An Oral History," due to be released this month by Basic Books, is based on a massive
survey and interview project of people living in Nazi Germany by Johnson and his
co-author, Karl-Heinz Reuband, a German sociology professor at the University of
"What We Knew" is a companion to Johnson's earlier work, "The Nazi Terror: Gestapo,
Jews and Ordinary Germans," a book based mostly on archival findings that proved ordinary
Germans' silent complicity in the Holocaust. Johnson and Reuband surveyed more than 3,000
people and personally interviewed 200 Germans and Jews alive during the Third Reich about
their daily lives and experiences during that time. Forty of the 200 interviews are
excerpted in the book.
"This is probably the most massive attempt to survey German people, both Jewish and
non-Jewish, who lived through the Third Reich and to try to determine what kind of lives
they had," Johnson said. "The broad question was how penetrating was terror in the lives
of ordinary people. We were very interested in comparing what the Jewish experiences were
versus the non-Jewish. It was a vastly different experience for each group," he said.
The survey found that whereas all Jews experienced persecution under the Nazi regime,
many Germans led very normal lives, and few felt that they were personally threatened by
Nazi terror, Johnson said.
"Millions of ordinary German citizens knew about mass murder." Johnson and his German
colleague, Reuband, got into some heated arguments on this point, but they both agreed
that at least one-third, and possibly more than one-half, of the German population knew
about the Holocaust.
"This level of German-American cooperation is unique. I'm the son of an American POW held
in Germany during World War II, and he's the son of an average German. Having two people
from two perspectives come to an agreement is very important but enormously difficult.
-"We argue that the experience of Jews and non-Jews were completely dissimilar.
Hitler's Germany had two faces. To Jews, it was the face of evil. To Germans, it was often
the face of an ordinary policeman. Relations between Jews and non-Jews were good before
Hitler came to power. But there was a very significant change right when Hitler came to
power. Anti-Semitism got ever worse over time.
"More than 80 percent of Germans either said they liked National Socialism or that they
found things to their liking. They liked the economic factors. Hitler was credited with
getting rid of unemployment. Hitler created a bunch of public works systems - the
Autobahn, paid vacation programs. Germans liked the sense of community feeling. Some liked
the sense of national pride.
"We shouldn't imagine that all people lead awful lives under a dictatorship. A
dictatorship can be popular and can offer a life that seems normal to the majority of its
citizens. We need to know that as Americans, if we want to be successful in dealing with
places like Iraq and Iran. If we assume that dictatorship is so horrible, that's not the
Israeli Innovative Bandages Saving American Lives in Iraq
By ISRAEL21c.org (copyright 2005)
In the Gulf War in the early 1990s, US soldiers fighting on the Middle Eastern
battlefield sometimes found themselves using dressings dating from World War II to patch
up their wounds. In the present Iraqi conflict, however, American forces are now using an
advanced new bandage, developed in Israel that can save lives by stopping traumatic
hemorrhaging wounds, and can also be used as a tourniquet, or a sling.
The new bandage, called the Emergency Bandage, was developed by First Care Products, a
tiny four-man Jerusalem start-up. The bandage marks the first major alteration to field
dressings since the 1940s, and has already established its worth.
One of the major causes of death for soldiers at war is not the injury itself, but loss
of blood on the battlefield. In the Vietnam war, for example, one in four soldiers died
from hemorrhage bleeding or injuries to their extremities. In the current Iraqi war, only
one in 10 deaths are attributable to this. One of the main reasons for this is that the US
military has changed tactics. In the past, soldiers were taken off the battlefield and
then treated for their injuries. Today, they are treated on the spot, which improves a
victim's chances of survival. Often it is the soldier himself who takes responsibility for
dealing with his wounds.
The Emergency Bandage fits well into the new philosophy of military medicine. In the
past, soldiers or medics treating wounds would have to use three or four different
dressings to bandage a wound. It was time consuming and often it was difficult to achieve
the right pressure on a wound to stop the bleeding.
Ofer Molad, First Care's VP of marketing in the US, remembers how he and fellow
soldiers serving in the Israel Defense Force (IDF), would wrap a rock into the bandage to
maintain the right pressure. The Emergency Bandage, however, is an elasticized bandage
with a non-adhesive bandage pad sewn in. The bandage has a built-in pressure bar, which
allows the soldier to twist the bandage around the wound once, and then change the
direction of the bandage, wrapping it around the limb or body part, to create pressure on
the wound. Aside from this, the pressure bar also makes bandaging easier. A closure bar at
the end of the bandage means that it clips neatly into place and will not slip.
The pressure bar also enables a soldier to use the bandage on complicated injuries like
the groin and head, which require wrapping in different directions. The bandage can be put
on with one hand, as Molad deftly demonstrated. "It's a very versatile bandage. It can be
applied quickly and easily by an injured soldier or non-medical personnel for immediate
hemorrhage control. It saves time in an emergency situation where every second is
Certainly the US military thinks so. Last year, the US Army purchased nearly 200,000
bandages for its troops. This year, the US Army purchased 800,000. The Emergency Bandage,
nicknamed the Israeli bandage by US troops, was created by American-Israeli Bernard
Ben-Natan, a former combat medic in the IDF.
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