Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California on September 28, 1987 · Page 4
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Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California · Page 4

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Ukiah, California
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Monday, September 28, 1987
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Page 4
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THE UKIAH DAILY JOURNAL OPINION MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 28,1987 EDITORIAL Community spirit soars Saturday was a grand day in Ukiah! The new civic center was dedicated with great fanfare and much ado that showed the spirit of this community. From the start of the parade symbolically closing the old city facilities until the dance ended Saturday night, there was a sense of excitement and a feeling of sense of community. In addition to community officials and political dignitaries, the parade featured people from all walks of life, from the native Pomo Indians to a fine float from the City of Ten Thousand Bud- dhas, and touched almost every person living in this community in some way. The ceremony was most appropriately opened by a blessing in the Pomo language, led by Salome Alcantra, Pomo spiritual leader. It was fitting that Congressman Doug Bosco and State Assemblyman Dan Hauser joined in the dedication ceremony. Bosco brought a flag that had flown over the U.S. Capitol and Hauser gave the city a California flag used in the dedication. The historical reviews by Frank Crane, Jack Simpson, and Leila Romer were fun to hear. Crane's father built the original building and he and members of his family did the remodeling into a civic center. Crane's son, Doug, and son-in-law Ron Selim had to literally do much of the work themselves when a subcontract failed to perform. Members of his family worked into the late hours Friday night and were back on the job early Saturday morning to see that everything was cleaned up and ready for Saturday's event. Simpson, a former mayor, school administrator and teacher, reviewed some of the events of his life during the early days of the school. And Mrs. Romer not only told of the fun times she had under the old oak tree left standing, but revealed that the redwood trees rimming the site were planted by school children under her direction 37 years ago. She said the trees survived because the kids who had worked so hard planting them apparently protected them in the early years of their life. How many knew that Ukiah is "The Lilac City"? It was most appropriate that a seedling from those original lilacs the chamber of commerce brought in so many years ago was planted as a part of the dedication service. The thousands attending the dedication had to be proud of the way our Mayor Colleen Henderson conducted the ceremony. And it was wonderful that her father, former Mayor Ralph Buxton, was a member of the official dedication party. Even the huge cake was a big success — we understand the icing alone weighed 150 pounds. Rose-Marie, chairman of the celebration, ably assisted by co-chairman Robert Sandelin, who grew up in Ukiah and attended school at the old building, and other members of their committee are to be commended for a great day. There was a sense about the dedication that it was more than just a dedication of a remodeled building, even if that building does have great historical significance in Ukiah. The event was a review of just what Ukiah is all about through its theme "Ukiah — Then and Now", placing emphasis on both the history of the school site and what this community has become. City Manager Kent Payne highlighted some of the notable accomplishments of Ukiah during recent years as this community has grown to become a viable, exciting city. It is always gratifying to be able to look at the past and reminisce about what happened. And while the past is important, its importance is because it points the way to the future. The future is what is truly meaningful and important. And that is what Saturday's ceremony was all about. It was about the future — it was a dedication of a building to the use of our children and grandchildren. The new civic center is a crowning tribute to the past and a shining example for the future, setting a standard for further achievements in this community. And as Congressman Bosco said, it is not buildings nor natural resources nor our military strength that make this nation so great. \l is the spirit of its people. , • * Ukiah is an exciting part of a wonderful county, a bountiful slate and a great nation. The spirit that makes this so was displayed Saturday at an event that docs the entire community proud. Letter policy "THE SKY \S FAU.IN6, THE SKY IS FAIUNC/" JACK ANDERSON Customs on trail of Iran arms deal WASHINGTON — A year before the Iran/contra scandal rocked the Reagan administration, the U.S. Customs Service developed information on one of the early secret arms shipments to Iran by the White House. But Customs did not pursue the matter after it was assured by the CIA that the United States was not involved. The near-exposure of the secret Iranian arms operation in the fall of 1985 was touched off by an occurrence as trivial as'the taped door latch of Watergate: The plane that carried Ihe weapons to Iran over- flew Turkish territory on its way back to Israel — and peeved Turkish officials publicly identified the DC-8 and its secret route. But the press never picked up on the Turks' disclosure. This bizarre might-have-been element in the Iran/contra scandal was gleaned from two confidential Customs documents we have seen. The first document was written on Sept. 20, 1985, by the chief of the Customs Service's office of intelligence, George D. Heavey. It reported that two days earlier, "the Office of Intelligence received fragmentary information ... that a U.S.-registered DC-8 aircraft (with a crew of three) had landed for emergency repairs in Israel directly from Iran and was en route to an unknown destination." The internal memo went on to say that even though Customs had the tail number of Ihe DC-8, the Israeli defense ministry maintained a "blackout on information on the aircraft." As a result, the memo added, the U.S. ambassador to Bahrain could say little when the Iraqi ambassador there "made discreet inquiries about (this and other) flights and arms smuggling to Iran." The stated U.S. policy at the time was to discourage arms sales to Iraq's enemy in the Persian Gulf war. Based on his sketchy information, the Customs intelligence chief came to this conclusion: "Israelis have been caught 'red-handed' supplying Iran with war material, even though they tried to hide the operation by using aircraft owned by a Nigerian airline, based 'in Brussels and registered in the United States." In fact, of course, the secret sale of arms to Iran was a White House operation with Israeli cooperation. Customs had no way of knowing it, but its puzzling intelligence information involved the U.S.-approved Israeli shipment of 408 TOW anti-tank missiles to Iran on Sept. 14, 1985, as part of an arms-for-hostages deal. The same day, Rev. Benjamin Weir was released after 16 months' captivity in Lebanon. Customs intelligence analysis were able to provide more details on the mystery flight in a memo to Commissioner William Von Raab written on Oct. 30, 1985. The U.S.-registered DC-8 had "departed Tabriz, Iran, with a crew of three" on Sept. 16, the memo noted, adding: "The plane disappeared over Turkish air space, then arrived at Tel Aviv Ben Gurion Airport for an 'emergency* landing (due to an 'equipment malfunction.') The plane remained in Tel Aviv for about 48 hours." The memo said the incident first broke when 'Turkish authorities broadcast information concerning the DC-8, its origin and landing in Israel." The memo added that the information "probably was made public by the Turkish government as officials were displeased by the failure of the DC-8's owners to pay the overflight fees." Noting that despite thi Turks' disclosure, "U.S. press coverage was minimal," the Customp analyst suggested: j "The lack of press cove possibly be attributed to by the State Department. ... have advised the Fcderil Aviation Administration and Customs personnel to forget incident.' " Then, in a rci prescient observation, the analyst added: "It appcj rs the State Department may have been suppressing this information! in order la keep a controversial incident from causing the U.S. and Israeli governments major embarrassment." Finally, the imemo staled, "a check with CIA officials on U.S. involvement was negative, gc may ircssurc fficials whole arkably Cuss iniel- lo. In fact, Commissioner Voln Raab toms' dangerously suspicioi ligence analysis were lied was never let in on the secret operation his intelligence people had almost figured out. On July 11, 1986, Dale van Alia told Vob Raab the While House was smuggling arms lo Iran. Von Raab replied lhai Van Ana's information was wrong. MINI-EDITORIAL — At! last: a modern version of Ihe lajl who murdered his parents and appealed for mercy on grounds that he was an orphan: John Fcddcrs, forrrjcr enforcement chief at Ihe Securities and Exchange Commission, has asked for a share in the proceeds from his wife's new book, "Shattered Dreams." The reason a book publisher was interested in Charlotte Fedders' slory — arid Uie reason he quil his SEC posi — was her allegations that he repeatedly beat her up during their marriage. According to his lawyer, Fcddcrs deserves some of the money she got in advance, plus part of any future royalties. We say he deserves an award for colossal nerve. Editorial Sampler The Journal welcomes letters from our readers. However, we reserve the right not to print those letters we consider may be libelous, in bad taste or a personal attack. Letters must not exceed 300 words m lenght and should be typed and double-spaced. All letters must be signed and include an address and phone number for verification. Anonymous Idlers will nol be primed. By The Associated Press Here are excerpts from recent editorials in newspapers throughout ihe nation. Sept. 19 The Providence (R.I.) Journal on the Persian Gulf situation: By now it might be said that the Persian Gulf has become much less of a crisis than was originally predicted down on the Potomac River. In hindsight, the difficulties that probably would have followed had the United States refused to assert and protect free world rights in the gulf are easily seen. U.S. prestige would have taken a beating, and that might have had adverse effects on a spectrum of American policy initiatives overseas and in this hemisphere. Yet, it is certainly too early to declare victory and go home, or even to hope mat Iran will remain tame forever. This time, however, politics in Washington failed to halt or constrain foreign policy as it has done so often before. The sea lanes are open, the world wallows in oil, and halting moves toward peace in the region are better than none. ART BUCHWALD Sept. 18 Detroit Free Press on the auto talks: Neither the Ford agreement nor the Chrysler Canada agreement, now both tentatively concluded, is the heart of the matter for the automobile industry this year. What the larger community has to hope, (hough, is that the spirit of cooperation that yielded a tentative contract at Ford might yet spare GM the strike many fear even now. A Unique' arms persuasion WASHINGTON — It appears we have an agreement with the Russians to remove medium- range nuclear missiles from Europe. The negotiations were tough, and both sides worked hard to put a deal together. How did it happen? One of the Americans on the delegation, said to be a CIA man, went to a Soviet delegate and said to him, "You might as well make a deal. We know for a fact your medium-sized missiles don't work." The Soviet delegate, certain to be a KGB man, cried, "You've been spying on us! That violates the Geneva convention." "Don't get so excited," the CIA man said. "Ours don't work either." "You're sure?" "We couldn't even light a Christmas tree with one. For years we knew your missiles were no good — but it was only recently we found out ours arc bummers." "How can I believe you?" the KGB man wanted to know. "Don't take my word for it. Inspect our contractors' spare parts. If that doesn't convince you the missiles won't work nothing will." The KGB man was suspicious. "Why arc you telling me all this?" "Because we want an arms treaty and the only way to get one is to convince you that what we arc both taking out of Europe doesn't matter since they won't fly anyway," the CIA man said. "If we took ours out unilaterally the political fallout would be awful. If you take yours out alone you get the same flak. We have to remove them together so there will be peace in our time." "Wait a minute," the KGB man said. "What about the Pershing missiles in West Germany? If both of us give up our missiles arid the Germans keep theirs, Bonn could become the biggest threat to Europe." "Don't worry, comrade. The German missiles don't work either." "How can we be so sure each other's medium- sized nuclear weapons don't work?" the KGB man asked. "As part of the treaty we will test-fire every missile as it is removed from its hole." "At what target?" "Iran. It's always good for a soft landing. If for some reason the missile isn't a dud, then it's 'Bye-bye Tehran.' " , "So what are you saying?" "We sign a treaty and remove all medium-sized weapons from Europe. Then we go out and buy white tie and tails to wear when we get the Nobel Prize." "Let's drink to glasnost and Gorbachev." "To Beverly Hills and Ronald Reagan." "I can sec the day," the KGB man said, "when every missile will be turned into a plowshare." "And every plowshare will be sold to the Russians to help the farmers get on their feet." "We must make peace by eliminating all weapons that don't work." "Except for one," the CIA man said. "What weapon do you refuse to give up for the cause of peace?" "Minesweepers." Almanac By The Associated Press Today is Monday, Sept. 28, Ihe 271 si day of 1987. There are 94 days left in the year. Today's highlight in history: Two hundred years ago, on Sept. 28,1787, Congress voted to send the just-completed Constitution of the United States to the state legislatures for their approval. On this date: In 1066, William the Conqueror invaded England to claim the English throne. In 1542, Portuguese navigator Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo discovered what is now San Diego. In 1781, American forces in the Revolutionary War, backed by a French fleet, began their siege of , Yorktown Heights, Va. In 1850, flogging was abolished as a form of punishment in the U.S. Navy. In 1920, eight members of the Chicago White Sox were indicted for allegedly throwing the 1919 World Series against the Cincinnati Reds in what became known as the Black Sox Scandal. In 1924, two U.S. Army planes landed in Seattle, having completed the first round-the-world flight. Elapsed time: 17S days. In 1939, Germany and the Soviet Union agreed on a plan to partition Poland in World War II. In 1967, the District of Columbia got its first mayor, Walter Washington. In 1972, Japan and Communist China agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations. In 1974, first lady Betty Ford underwent a mastectomy at Bethesda Naval Medical Center in Maryland following the discovery of a cancerous lump in her breast. Ukiah Daily M«ndocmo County, C*hliiniir Donald W. Reynolds, Chairman of the Board Thomas W. Beeves, General Manager John An»*«sio Managing Editor Dcnuc H*U Bruc* SchlabauKh Advertising Director Victor Martinet Eddie Sequeira Display Advertising Manager Yvonne Bell Olair* Booker CircuUlion Manager Member Audit Bureau ot Cir< illations LOCALLY OPERATED MEMBf H DONREY MEDIA GROUP Composing Superv nor fw«i Supcrvimr OHicer Manager -DOONESBURY 70PAY Wt'fie WS7/N6 AN 2^ \ISW5WffiQUKOUH! ]f ^ / •CWH2.3 VCRS flEK HOME-, • APPROVE OF IIPOSUCTION, • CWT &.T ENOUGH POPCORN.

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