KUWAIT (AP)--Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat was quoted Thursday as saying President Ronald Reagan is "a robot and a parrot who has no logic or principles."
Arafat, in a statement to the Kuwait News Agency from his headquarters in Tunis, said there is "no point of comparison" between Reagan and his predecessor Jimmy Carter, "who is a man of principles derived from his true Christian spirit."
Reagan "does not know the meaning of abiding by his pledges and the commitments of the administration and does not cherish values and does not know the meaning of returning a good deed," the agency reported.
Arafat said Carter, "tried as much as possible to carry out the pledges he made during his term even though these pledges were not fully satisfactory."
The PLO chairman seemed to be alluding to Carter's commitment during his presidential term to the right of Palestinians in Israeli-occupied territories to be given some autonomy during a transition period before determining their own future.
Arafat was quoted as saying that before PLO fighters were removed from Israeli-besieged west Beirut in 1982, Reagan's envoy Philip Habib gave a written pledge to protect the Palestinian refugee camps* but that was "just ink on paper."
"I personally think Reagan is a mere robot and parrot
who repeats what is dictated to him, without understanding the
dimensions of his words since he truly has no logic,"
Arafat was quoted as saying.
(Article accompanied by photograph of Jimmy Carter,
(text of January 3, 1986 Vancouver Sun article)
DON'T THINK THE WISDOM OF THOMAS JEFFERSON IS PASSÉ YET IN WHAT YOU ARE ENTITLED TO FROM YOUR GOVERNMENT? LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD: TAKE A BRIEF SIDESTEP HERE TO SIGN MY GUESTBOOK.
-I SUPPOSE AN IMPORTANT ISSUE IN THIS CONTEXT IS: ARE THERE
'PRINCIPLES' WORTH DYING FOR?
RELATING TO THE CONTENTS HERE ABOUT "PRINCIPLES"--INCLUSIVE OF THIS ISSUE OF BEING WILLING TO DIE FOR THEM--VISITORS TO THIS AWARD-WINNING WEBSITE SHOULD TAKE A BRIEF SIDESTEP HERE.
ANOTHER 'PRINCIPLE' CERTAINLY WOULD BE: IF FACED WITH THE POSSIBILITY OF DEATH FROM INACTION, FAILURE, OR PERHAPS AN ARROGANT REFUSAL TO CORRECT AN ACKNOWLEDGED OR OBVIOUS (POLICY) MISTAKE, WHAT CAN BE DONE TO REDUCE THAT RISK (SUPPOSING THE INHERENT SURVIVAL INSTINCT EXISTS IN MOST--IF NOT "ALL OF US")?
BEFORE I SPOKE BY TELEPHONE WITH MY FRIEND, DESMOND TUTU, TWICE ON APRIL 2, 1986, THE DAY OF HIS FIRST PRESS CONFERENCE CALLING FOR ECONOMIC SANCTIONS AGAINST SOUTH AFRICA, I SPOKE A NUMBER OF TIMES WITH HIS ASSISTANT, MRS. SEKAPHONE, AND OTHERS AT THE JOHANNESBURG ARCHDIOCESE.
I HADN'T SPOKEN WITH THE 1984 NOBEL PEACE LAUREATE SINCE 1978, WHEN I CALLED HIM AND EXPLAINED TO HIM WHAT IS SUMMARIZED BY WHAT YOU FIND IF YOU TAKE A BRIEF SIDESTEP HERE.
MRS. SEKAPHONE AND HER COLLEAGUES WEREN'T AWARE OF THIS AT FIRST: AS I SAID IN THE SIDESTEP ABOVE, DESMOND SURPRISED ME IN 1978 BY ANSWERING MY CALL TO HIM HIMSELF. THUS, WHEN I CALLED IN 1986 AND OBVIOUSLY HAD TO MENTION THE ASSOCIATION WITH THE AMERICAN GOVERNMENT, THEY JUMPED TO THE CONCLUSION THAT I WAS A PARTISAN OF REAGAN ADMINISTRATION ANTI-ECONOMIC SANCTIONS POLICY AND ALMOST HUNG UP ON ME IN ANGER.
IT WAS ONLY WHEN I EXPLAINED ABOUT THE 1978 DISCUSSION WITH DESMOND, AND THE FACT THAT IT HAD BEEN WORK FOR JIMMY CARTER AS WELL AS FOR "UNICEF", THAT THE HOVERING POSSIBILITY OF A PHONE BEING SLAMMED DOWN IN MY EAR WAS ALLEVIATED.
HISTORY WILL SUBSTANTIATE THAT EVEN THOUGH THE BOTHA REGIME WAS SECRETLY NEGOTIATING WITH NELSON MANDELA WHILE HE WAS STILL IMPRISONED, TOWARDS A PEACEFUL TRANSITION LEADING TO ALL-INCLUSIVE, FREE ELECTIONS AND REMOVAL OF THE APARTHEID SYSTEM, THEY WERE FUNDING INKHATA, MISLEADING THE WESTERN DEMOCRACIES ABOUT THE "SITUATION" IN SOUTH AFRICA, AND DEVELOPING THOSE NUCLEAR WEAPONS.
IF YOU'RE NOT COMING TO THIS PAGE FROM THERE, TAKE A BRIEF SIDESTEP HERE TO CONSIDER A TERM OF REFERENCE AND FOOTNOTE TO IT ABOUT RONALD REAGAN AND HIS "PRINCIPLES."
FOR AN HISTORIC AMERICAN "VIEW" ON THIS, TAKE A BRIEF SIDESTEP HERE. (IT IS A TWO-PAGE SEQUENCE.)
*-ON THE SUBJECT OF THE PALESTINIAN REFUGEE CAMPS, TAKE YOUR NEXT FOOTSTEP HERE.