JERUSALEM (Dec. 19)
Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, speaking at the opening of the First International Jerusalem Conference of Children of Holocaust Survivors, said Sunday that Palestine Liberation Organization chief Yasir Arafat has not altered “his satanic intent and plan.”
Shamir told the gathering of some 300 participants that history is trying to repeat itself, with the PLO “attempting to lead the cultured nations of the world astray.”
He called the current political peace developments “a worldwide spectacle of deception, in which the entire civilized world . . . worships those bearing the banner of hatred for Israel.”
The participants, arriving in Jerusalem from 10 different countries, included the Hungarian relatives of Hanna Senesh, who smuggled herself into Hungary during World War II. Senesh was caught by the Germans and was executed shortly before the end of the war.
Also speaking at the opening ceremony was Dov Shilansky, the new Knesset speaker, who spoke on the symbolic importance of the election of a Holocaust survivor as Knesset speaker.
He further denounced Arafat’s new political moves, describing them as trying to achieve by “means of political cunning what they did not succeed in bringing about with arms, blood, terrorism and violence.”
Shamir repeated his pledge “not to speak with terrorists, whose one goal is to establish another Arab state, in addition to the 21 already existing, in place of the Jewish state.”
He declared that “our hands are stretched out in peace to our neighbors, to whom we say: If you honestly and truly desire peace, prove it by your willingness to sit with us at the table of direct negotiations, and together we will solve our differences of opinion.
“But if your desire is to annihilate us, then the Jewish people in Israel will strike back sevenfold against those seeking to destroy it.”