FROM OUR ARCHIVES
50 YEARS AGO
November 15, 1967
For the first time in history, the entire world would be able to see, almost live, the Christmas Eve Mass to be celebrated in the Roman Catholic section of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem on the night of December 24. The American NBC network made arrangements to film the mass. With the help of the Israeli military government the film would be rushed to Lod Airport in time to catch a plane to Rome where it would promptly be transmitted by Telstar. In the past the Jordanian government allowed only the BBC to televise and broadcast the mass to Britain only. In related news, Christmas and New Year pilgrims arriving at Atarot and Lod airports and the Haifa port would receive a replica of an antique earthen oil lamp from the Tourism Ministry.
MK Emile Habibi of the New Communists party warned of the potential for television propaganda on the upcoming Arabic-language public television scheme, which would make the Arabs of the territories even more cynical than they already were. He said that while everything would look nice on the screen, they would see a different sort of thing on the stage of their everyday lives. MK Yitzhak Navon of Rafi suggested that to make the programming attractive, they would need performers and personalities from the territories, and that meant giving them the chance to speak their minds freely. Otherwise Israeli TV would be a service run by Arabic-speaking Jews for Arab viewers, he predicted.
15 YEARS AGO
November 15, 2002
The human rights organization B’Tselem issued a report documenting five cases in which the IDF allegedly used Palestinian civilians as “human shields” in violation of a High Court of Justice interim injunction banning the procedure at least temporarily. According to the report, the soldiers ordered Palestinians to locate suspected terrorists or convey commands to them in order to decrease the danger to the soldiers themselves. In one incident in Jenin, Khaled Kamil was awakened in the middle of the night by soldiers who first questioned him regarding his neighbors, and then forced him, on pain of arrest and the destruction of his house, to enter the neighboring house through a hole which they blew into one of the walls. Kamil was told to call out to a senior Islamic Jihad military commander hiding there and to tell him to give himself up.
Jewish Defense League leader Irv Rubin, 57, died in a Los Angeles hospital after attempting to commit suicide in jail a week earlier. The apparent suicide attempt occurred just hours before Rubin was to make a court appearance on charges he plotted to bomb a Southern California mosque and the office of Rep. Darrell Issa, the grandson of Lebanese immigrants. By his own count, Rubin had been arrested more than 40 times, many due to disrupting Ku Klux Klan and Aryan Nations events. In 1975, Rubin offered a $500 bounty to anyone who would wound or kill a member of the American Nazi Party. (After being sentenced to 20 years in federal detention for his part in the plot, Rubin’s first lieutenant was killed by a fellow inmate two years into his sentence.)