ZOA Leader Urges Reagan to Grasp the Moment’ in Lebanon

Declaring that there is a new basis of reality on the Middle East which could very well redirect the entire political direction of the region, Ivon Novick, president of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) called on President Reagan to “grasp the moment” and insist that the sovereignty of Lebanon as a free and democratic nation be reestablished.

“This requires the necessary safeguards to prevent the reappearance of the PLO and the withdrawal of the Soviet-dominated Syrian forces which have served to destabilize the area which bears the responsibility for so much bloodshed and strife,” said Novick in an address before the national executive committee of the ZOA. Novick also told several hundred delegates gathered here at the Sheraton-Southfield that “the State of Israel has struck a major blow against the scourge of terrorism which President Reagan recently and properly said plagues the Middle East. By its action in Lebanon, Israel has bravely confronted the terrorist PLO which has demonstrated its contempt for human life by its inhuman shelling of Israel’s population centers in its continuing violent objectives aimed at destroying the Jewish State.”

Regarding the Palestinian Arabs, Novick said: “We believe that Israel’s action against the PLO in Lebanon provides responsible world leaders, led by President Reagan, the opportunity to voice a powerful plea to the Palestinian Arabs to act courageous in their own self interests. No longer should the Palestinian Arab people feel intimidated by the terrorist PLO with the encouragement and leadership of the U.S. let them come forward to negotiate with Israel to secure a safe and creative future for all the peoples in the area.”

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