The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia on May 22, 1993 · 2
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The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia · 2

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Atlanta, Georgia
Issue Date:
Saturday, May 22, 1993
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2
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Do you have a question AW. raa teas $ mm about the news - local, national or international? Betty Parham and Gerrie Ferris will try to TO n xii r. r 1 1 r r m 1 11 r .i (? ennrYa get an answer for you. 0N THE KEWS Call 222-2002 on a touch-tone phone and follow the instructions. IS i: r,! X'v l.v-M jP : V - 2 w Arab-Americans: Spy controversy twists our mission : San Francisco authorities have filed charges' against a former police officer they say sold confidential information to an illegal spying network operated by the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith (ADL). The former officer, Tom Gerard, is alleged to have sold the information to Roy Bulloch, an art dealer who supposedly collected data oh the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) and others in nearly 40 years as a paid informant for the Jewish civil rights organization. -The ADL has denied violating any laws and is cooperating with police. I Staff writer Deborah Scroggins talked this week with ADC President Albert Mokhiber about the controversy. jQ: What is the American-Arab Anti-Discrimi-ndiibn Committee? I At The basic work of the ADC is to safeguard and protect the civil and constitutional rights of Arab-Americans and at the same time promote out culture and heritage, because the root cause of discrimination ... is ignorance. ; So we see our role as filling that void with education, but also going to court or to bat for others . when neccessary. Q: What are the biggest threats to the rights of Arab-Americans? At During the Gulf War, which is the most recent spate of harrassment to Arab-Americans, we witnessed a 300 percent increase in hate crimes. We've been keeping records since 1985, when our regional director, Alex Odeh, was assassinated by terrorists. . . . Whenever there is a crisis relating to the Middle East, we seem to face a horrible backlash here in the U.S. ' Q: The ADL has said it legally investigates organizations that may present a threat to Jewish-Americans. Does the ADC monitor groups that it believes present a threat to Arab-Americans? At Absolutely not. We're a civil rights organization. We're not a spy cell, and that's why we were so outraged to find that the ADL was in fact keeping such records. ' Q: So you don't have any confidential informants who provide you with information? A: Absolutely not. The major informant for the ADL in California, Roy Bullock, had spent a great deal of time infiltrating our organization. He was one of our most vocal members. In fact, we have pictures of him carrying banners in support of Palestinian human rights, and we printed one of them in our most recent newsletter. He portrayed himself as someone sincerely in- MA WILLIAM BERRY Staff district includes the 9,000-acre base, said in a prepared state-, ment that the decision was "dis-' appointing, but not entirely unex-! pected." He said he was confident that Robins could "withstand this year's review process." Meanwhile, Rep. John Lewis ' planned to hold two town hall meetings this weekend in the area of his district that includes Forts McPherson and Gillem. :i Rep. Don Johnson, who earlier had questioned whether politics had entered the base-closing issue, said later that Friday's action doesn't mean the bases will close, only that the broader list of facilities will be investigated. . The commission has untiL June 1 to complete the list of bases it will consider this summer in drawing up final recommendations for those to be closed or realigned. Defense Secretary Les Aspin has recommended closing 31 installations, realigning 12 bases and reducing 122 smaller facilities. The commission will investigate all the bases on its list, including holding local hearings, before drawing up a final recommendation for President Clinton and Congress. Both can either accept or reject the list but cannot change it. Moody, a tactical fighter base near the Florida border;, was recommended for closure two years ago but was spared by the commission. Sen. Sam Nunn (D-Ga.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and state and local officials lobbied hard to save Moody. ' The commission's staff had recommended considering both Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem for closure, since their functions could be absorbed into larger Army posts with excess space. The Army had said it could move Forces Command headquarters to Fort Hood in Texas, but the shift would be expensive. Forts Gillem, McPherson, Robins cited By Mike Christensen WASHINGTON BUREAU Washington A government commission Friday night voted to consider closing Atlanta's two Army posts Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem as well as Robins Air Force Base near Macon as part of a continuing economy drive. None of the bases is in immediate jeparady, however. The independent Base Closure and Realignment Commission decided to add them to a list of possibilities "for comparison purposes" with other Army and Air Force installations the Pentagon has recommended closing, explained commission Chairman James Courier. In the case of Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem, Mr. Courier said, "We wanted to just take another look at it before we accepted the Army recommendations." In a marathon meeting that stretched toward midnight, the commission declined to consider shutting down Moody Air Force Base at Valdosta, which was spared two years ago after being on the list. The Marine Corps Depot at Albany, however, remained a potential target. The 108-year-old Fort McPherson, four miles southwest of Downtown Atlanta, is the headquarters of the Army's Forces Command, which supervises active-duty and reserve units across the United States and its terrtor-ies, and of the 3rd Army. Fort Gillem, a larger but subsidiary base in nearby Forest Park, is headquaters of the 2nd Army and the Southeast Region terested in Arab civil rights and someone dedicated to the principles of our organization, and everyone believed him to be so. Q: One of the allegations is that an Arab-American code-named "Flipper" infiltrated your Atlanta chapter. What do you know about that? A; At this point, unfortunately, we're still in the dark. We're anticipating we'll be filing a lawsuit ourselves in the next month, and through discovery we're going to seek to have the identities of all these infiltrators revealed in order that we can go forward with our case and find out what type of ; damage has been incurred to the community. We will be looking especially in the Atlanta community for individuals to come forward with information for the lawsuit and for the investigation of the police department. Q: Why would anyone be harmed if Mr. Bullock or others infiltrated your organization? A: It's a form of political rape in the sense that we had trusted this individual. We aren't doing anything illegal or immoral. But if we're planning, for instance, a strategy for a campaign of human rights or civil rights, and that information is given to the Israeli government and these individuals are then subject to arrest, interrogation or worse when they return to Israel to visit their fa-milies.then you can see the problem. What we do here in the U.S. in our organization is perfectly legal but would, for the most part, be illegal in countries like Israel or South Africa. The other information that was obtained by the ADL concerns us even more and is clearly illegal. These informants routinely went to police departments and federal agencies and illegally obtained information about our members. Q: Is there any evidence that this took place anywhere outside of San Francisco? A: We were told by the prosecutors that everywhere in the country we could expect that these types of operations were going on. Q: How has this damaged your organization? A: Who has my Social Security number out there in the ADL? Who has the Social Security numbers of some thousands of Arab-Americans? Here's another concern we have. . . . Alex Odeh was murdered in Santa Ana, Calif. Roy Bullock claimed he was very close with Alex and that he even had access to the office. . . . Tom Gerard was a bomb expert, and Alex was killed by a bomb. . . . I'll be very honest with you. We've raised these concerns with the FBI. Spec. Illya Byrd stands guard Friday at the entrance to the Army's Fort Gillem in Clayton County. Recruiting Command. It is also a major storage depot and Reserve center. The two bases together have about 2,341 military personnel, the majority of them at Fort McPherson, and employ about 5,600 civilians. Robins Air Force Base at Warner Robins was one of three Air Force maintenance facilities the commission decided to add to its list for possible closure. The others are Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma and Kelly Air Force Base in Texas. The Pentagon has recommended closing only Newark Air Force Base in Ohio. Robins employs 7,000 military personnel and some 14,300 civilians. It is Middle Georgia's largest employer. Rep. J. Roy Rowland, whose TODAY'S liHVS I'M HI M PEK 00 mm p i i i in i m ciicrwc General Motors says it is committed to breaking even in North America. Bl Equifax agrees to pay $250 to $1 ,000 to any consumer damaged by an error that affected Vermont residents. Bl A new company is trying to spread the gospel of sweet-tasting Vidalia onions. Bl Stocks slump as long-term interest rates pass 7 percent, their highest level in seven weeks. Bll HOSPITAL SEE OUR LOW PRICE GUARANTEE. ZONE CAPTIONUSS CARTOONS ONLVl Will i GECellular ' Cambodia's Khmer Rouge ' 'rebels warn that Sunday's elec-; tlons would "put fuel on the ; flames of war." AI3 Yugoslavia rejects plans for U.N. supervision of its bor- der with Bosnia. AI3 I A dark chapter of Quebec history is coming to light: v Thousands of abandoned children during the 1940s and 1950s were committed im- properly to psychiatric hospi-:tals. AI5 j TV executives from NBC, ; CBS, ABC, Fox and three ca- ble networks tell senators they aren't proud of the mur-t derous month aired in their Webringgoodthingstolik 1. liuuutMtd ill bill U GE "Transpak 5000" Transportable ni-nr t lalhl.BiMzkiFHMl 1 Mt,Mmm 1 r I 1 IJfraKtCil Cellular Telephone with Digital Audio & 3-Year Warranty dual phone numbers prevent you from paying expensive roaming charges provides sound clarity by removing background noise full 3-watt power & 30-number memory built-in speaker for safe, hands-free conversation the state Supreme Court. Dl ACOG continues to ponder a theme for the Games. D6 A Florida businessman has three months to put some of Atlanta's poorest residents to work. D6 Prices may vary depending on carrier rate plan selected. Certain cellular telephone company lees and restrictions may appiy. mce win do higher without activation through Circuit City authorized cellular telephone company J t May race for ratings. A8 TP5000 Motorola Dynasty Webtmggoodthingstolik GE"Pocketfone" Portable Cellular Phone with 99-Number Memory & Dual Phone Numbers Capability I i 1 1. 1 uenuiar rnone witn oanery a Bti - n Recnaraer WW HIM LEMUR 1 CAH.1V CASE . . Price shown It vi based on J J , I activation with I 9 authorized cellular k carrier. 62(04 We've got top brand mobile, transportable and portable models all on display! f- Even 30 davs after your purchase, if you find a lower price advertised by a local store stocking the same item, we'll beat that pries ...GUAHANTlLO! O' r. Before and after your purchase, you . can count on Circuit City for expert assistance! You get a full 30 days from the date of purchase to make sure your cellular phone is exactly what you want. 0jri( p $ If s Our experts will ms!e your cellular phone an Intogral part of your car's inferior. And their work is guaranteed lor as long as you own yfi:.ir: car! ALkyoursnlos counnolor for M& i lunar HIlTrUTBS! Price shown Is based on activation with authorized cellular earner. TJA04 leisure g!j::e Keep it cheap: You don't have to break the bank to impress your date. 6 Another group's departure for China next week signifies Columbia Theological Seminary's commitment. E6 The EPA's effort to close a loophole in environmental law has important implications here in Georgia. AI8 ccll:;.:::sts Dick Williams: Gunga Dan meets Connie Chung. AI9 Mark Bradley; Gender equity has caused too many females to regard football, a game played by males only, as the root of all evil. CI Terence Moore: Deion Sanders needs baseball like rhythm needs blues. Unfortunately, he needs football just as badly. C7 Hi John Frost, a retired British major general with a heroic role In World War II. DI4 Get the newspaper on your home computer with ACCESS ATLANTA For information: 526-5662. Webimggoodthingstolrk GE Compact J! Motorola Is Socks, the White House j cat, included in a "personal Services contract" between ' yhe first family and a Beverly : Hills hair stylist? That is , among the "hot topics" at ; White House news confer- fences. A6 jSefore the administration's Jj'managed competition" plan I becomes the vehicle for Health care reform, work is still I npeded under the hood. A4 -The struggle for political bower between whites and tjblacks in Selma, Ala., shifted dramatically this week. A3 rhiew findings show reading ; and computers make nearsightedness worse. El As a second son prepares to I become a Marine aviator, his ' parents have questions about ; the helicopter crash that : ijaimed his brother. D I federal agents Friday re-tynoved explosives from a house near Suwanee and said : they posed a "grave danger" to I fre occupants. 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