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Ehud Barak Threatens More Bloody Reprisals

  • "We will know how to respond," the Israeli prime minister threatened as he hinted of a broader and bloodier war against Palestinians and others who continue to challenge Is rael's diktat.
Exclusive to The SPOTLIGHT
By Christopher Bollyn

CHICAGO -- Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak said that Palestinian refugees would not be allowed to return to their homes in Israel and that 80 percent of the illegal Israeli settlements built on confiscated Palestinian land would remain under Israeli sovereignty.

On Nov. 14, Barak addressed an international group of Jewish leaders who had convened here for the three-day United Jewish Communities (UJC) Gen er al Assembly 2000 conference. Barak spelled out the five points that Israel would demand of any peace deal with the Pal estinians.

Speaking at the Chicago Pavilion on the campus of the University of Illinois, Barak listed Israel's sine qua non for peace: recognized permanent borders for Israel; 80 percent of the settlements to be under Israeli sovereignty; arrangements to safeguard Israel from external threats; no rights for Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and villages in Israel; and a united "broad" Jerusalem with a Jewish majority as the capital of Israel.


Barak was introduced by Charles Bronfman, the liquor magnate of Cana da, and the biggest politicians of Illinois including Chicago's Mayor Richard Da ley, Gov. George Ryan and Sen. Dick Dur bin.

The SPOTLIGHT asked Durbin about Israel's use of American-supplied combat helicopters on Palestinian civilians and if Barak had delivered absentee ballots for the U.S. elections from dual-nationals living in Israel. Durbin equivocated on the first question and refused to answer the second, turning on his heel.