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Jerusalem Post - - COMMENT & FEATURES -

65 YEARS AGO

On June 7, 1951, The Jerusalem Post re­ported that UN chief of staff Maj.-Gen Wil­liam Ri­ley re­ported in an in­terim re­port to the UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil that the work on the drainage project in the Hula de­mil­i­ta­rized area had been post­poned. The Is­raeli gov­ern­ment spokesman an­nounced that a stop­page had been or­dered for a few days, at Ri­ley’s re­quest, to en­able the chair­man of the UN Mixed Is­raeli-Syr­ian Ar­mistice Com­mis­sion to in­ves­ti­gate the sta­tus of cer­tain lands on which the drainage work had been in progress and about whose own­er­ship sta­tus doubts had arisen.

The Knes­set Com­mit­tee in­ves­ti­gat­ing com­plaints by Zealot sus­pects of mal­treat­ment by police opened its hear­ings in Jerusalem. Police had in­ves­ti­gated these com­plaints, and no ev­i­dence was found to support the Zealots’ charges.

The way was cleared for the Knes­set elec­tions to be held on July 30, 1951. The Knes­set em­pow­ered the chair­man of the Central Elec­tion Com­mit­tee to deal with the vot­ers’ reg­is­ter com­piled on al­pha­bet­i­cal in­stead of the pre­scribed ge­o­graph­i­cal ba­sis in ar­eas where streets were with­out names or num­bers.

Af­ter a whirl­wind five-week tour of the US, on be­half of Is­rael Bonds, prime min­is­ter David Ben-Gu­rion was due to re­turn home in a spe­cial El Al plane.

The US Supreme Court de­nied a last-mo­ment plea to stay the ex­e­cu­tion of seven Nazi war crim­i­nals in Ger­many, clear­ing the last ob­sta­cle from the path lead­ing to their hang­ing at the US prison in Lands­berg, Ger­many.

50 YEARS AGO

On June 7, 1966, The Jerusalem Post re­ported that prime min­is­ter Levi Eshkol met Con­golese pres­i­dent Joseph Mobutu in Leopoldville for a se­ries of talks. Mobutu wel­comed Eshkol to the pres­i­den­tial man­sion, and said: “I am face to face with a leader who has African in­ter­est in view be­cause his coun­try suf­fered as has ours.” Dur­ing his wel­com­ing re­marks, Mobutu re­called that he had en­joyed para­chute train­ing in Is­rael in 1963.

The dis­pute on whether to raise the cost-of-liv­ing al­lowance the fol­low­ing month erupted in the Knes­set as Vic­tor Shem­tov of Ma­pam had warned fi­nance min­is­ter Pin­has Sapir that if the al­lowance was not raised Ma­pam would pro­voke a po­lit­i­cal cri­sis.

Syr­ian troops again fired shots into Is­raeli ter­ri­tory at Ashmora, set­ting fire to 300 dunams [30 hectares]. The loss was es­ti­mated at IL 50,000. An­other com­plaint was lodged with the UN Mixed Is­raeli-Syr­ian Ar­mistice Com­mis­sion.

Ahmed Shukeiry an­nounced in Da­m­as­cus that Syr­ian units of his Pales­tine Lib­er­a­tion Army would come un­der the or­ders of the Syr­ian army “in view of in­for­ma­tion re­ceived on Is­raeli con­cen­tra­tions on the Syr­ian borders.”

25 YEARS AGO

On June 7, 1991, The Jerusalem Post re­ported that there were signs that Syria had in­deed soft­ened its terms for the con­ven­ing of a Mid­dle East peace con­fer­ence, for­eign min­is­ter David Levy said upon his re­turn from Europe. If Da­m­as­cus would put this in writ­ing, there was like­li­hood that US sec­re­tary of state James Baker would re­turn to the re­gion, Levy ex­plained.

The Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion had wel­comed Levy’s re­cent sig­nals from Europe on progress in peace process, and was dis­play­ing ea­ger­ness to move for­ward with a Mid­dle East peace con­fer­ence.

The La­bor Party de­manded a state in­quiry into the al­leged ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties and fail­ures of the Hous­ing Min­istry, which were con­tained in the re­cent Comp­trol­ler’s Re­port. MK Rafi Edri charged that hous­ing min­is­ter Ariel Sharon had in­structed con­trac­tors to sell apart­ments, built for new im­mi­grants and young cou­ples at the min­istry’s di­rec­tions, at 10 per­cent more than the of­fi­cial price set by the min­istry. This was a “pub­lic scan­dal” that at many build­ing sites, like Gilo and Gi­vat Ze’ev, the min­istry sold land to con­trac­tors at 50 per­cent of its value.

– Alexan­der Zvielli

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