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Shazar Issues Plea for Peace in New Year; Pays Tribute to Israeli, Diaspora, Soviet Jews

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President Zalman Shazar, in a Rosh Hashana message released here this morning, reviewed the events, both good and bad, that affected Israel during the year just past and issued a plea for peace to come in the year ahead. “The year just ended will remain associated in our recollections with the Soviet intervention in our region,” Mr. Shazar said, “It was in this year that the Egyptian ruler consolidated the support he receives from the Russian Empire in all fields of re-armament, training and administrative advice. It was this year that the Katyushas landed on our border settlements. Soviet missiles brought succor to our adversaries all along the (Suez) Canal.” But despite the increasing threats to Israel’s security and its very existence, President Shazar said, the year just ended was marked by immigration totalling 40,000 persons and tourism that broke all previous records, totalling 270,000 visitors.

“This year there has been full employment and a record enrollment of 800,000 pupils in our schools,” President Shazar said. The Israeli chief of state paid special tribute to diaspora Jewry and the Jews of the Soviet Union “where the flame of Jewish loyalty is again bursting forth.” Diaspora Jewry, he said, “has raised itself above its internal divisions and appeared as one united people, rich in deeds and generous wherever the State of Israel was in danger.” Mr. Shazar hailed “our brethren in the countries of separation and silence who are languishing beyond the wall that surrounds them as in generations of old.” He added: “We are proud of the young men and women who defy danger and proudly declare that their hearts dwell in Zion, that their love speaks Hebrew. No fury can extinguish the sparks that are glowing in their hearts.”

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