February ’70 in the Exponent: National News Takes Center Stage

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Israel Jets to Continue Cairo Attacks

The modern Jewish Exponent focuses largely on local Jewish news, but that wasn’t the case in 1970.

The Exponent’s front covers around the start of the new decade were loaded with wire service articles about events in Israel and elsewhere — and the Feb. 20 issue was no exception.

The busy front cover featured nine items, only three of which were local.

Two stories with Jerusalem datelines led the page.

One detailed ongoing bombings by Israeli jets against Egyptian military targets. Prime Minister Golda Meir said the bombings would continue until Egypt abided by the cease-fire of 1967, even despite the errant bombing of a metal plant.

“They cannot carry on a war of attrition against us without our reacting,” Meir said. “They cannot expect us to stand by doing nothing.”

There also was an article — accompanied by a large photograph — about a controversial bill amending the Law of Return passing the Knesset.

The bill dealt with the question of “Who is a Jew?” and stated that “only persons who are Jewish according to Halachic law, those persons born of a Jewish mother, may be registered as Jewish by nationality. But the bill stipulates that non-Jewish spouses, children and grandchildren of immigrants will be given equal rights and privileges as those accorded to Jewish immigrants.”

Protesters, who were pictured in the photograph, said the bill was primarily to appease the Orthodox rabbinate.

On the local front, it was announced that the 1970 Allied Jewish Appeal-Israel Emergency Fund would begin March 2. In addition, there was an article about the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith reporting on ongoing anti-Semitism in the Soviet Union.