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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 30, 1970, Lethbridge, Alberta 34 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD Wednesday, September 30 1970 Diary Of Hat-rowing Experience Freed Airline Hijack Hostage Tells Of Ordeal HOSTAGE KEEPS DIAkY George B- Freda, of Belpre, Ohio, one of Ihe 32 Amer- ican airline hostages held by Arab guerrillas in Jordan, reads a lelter at Nicosia, Cyprus, airport, afler his arrival following the group's release. The businessman kept a diary on the -three weeks of harrowing experiences while a prisoner. American Immigrant Total Doubles In Past 10 Years VI George B. Freda of Belpre, Ohio, is a businessman who was one of 32 American air- line hostages released Sunday after witnessing Ihe Jordanian civil war during three weeks of captivity by Palestinian guerrillas. At one point during the harrowing experiences, Freda thought it was time to mite a "last letter" lo his wife. Here are exccrpls from the diary he kept while he was in Jordan. By GEORGE B. FREDA NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) The ordeal started with a man, clutching a pistol in one hanc and a hand grenade in the other, aboard an airplane over Europe. And it ended, a crazy three weeks later, aboard an airplane leaving a blown-up world behind. We survived by taking each day as it came, by joking, play- ing cards and wondering how come shells were hitting all around us but not falling on us, and giving thanks that Ihey didn't. Our experience began Sept. C, on Hie Trans World Airlines flight from Frankfurt. I had just finished a business trip in West Berlin. The stewardess was passing out drinks. Then a man with a pistol and grenade dashed up to the first class cabin. We were hijacked, and instead of New York we landed somewhere in Jordan. Sept. we awoke the hijacked planes were ringed by Ihe commandos and Ihey in turn were ringed by Jordanian sol- diers and tanks. We weren't al- lowed off. The guerrillas ques- tioned all of us about any connections with Israel. STRETCHED, GOT AIR Sept. sanitary condi- tions were deteriorating. We divided up duties.. I organized the sanitation detail- We were allowed out of the plane for the first time, we stretched and got some air for a few hours. OTTAWA (CP) The num-jlbe immigration total of her cf Americans moving 1959 persons moved to Canada has doubled in the and Americans ac- decade, with dralt-age for 11 per cent of the grants leading the Immigration department second-largest American tistics released recently increase occurred in that Americans 15-19 age group, where W6 grated to Canada in 1S69, males immigrated, pared to in to 231 in 1959. Tho Of the 1969 total, figure for females males between the ages of 772 in and. 373 a decade and 2-1, compared to 392 in Females in the same military drafl begins al group also increased, but 18 for American males. quite as sharply. In 1969 in the 25-29 age numbered up from 782 accounted for of American immigrants com- Americans moving to to in 1959. list year made up 14 per cent spokesman for the depart- Gay Nineties Home Silent And NEW YORK (AP) Fuchs, who has run it my's Bowery Follies, then. brated home of Gay always did all the vaudeville, today stands I was just his wife. end empty, mourned by mingled with Ihe biggest stars, swells, drunks Hie lowest, and they all down-and-ouls who joined him." more than 36 The old songs and tlie old acts were played for the last time in the noisy, beery saloon before it closed its doors at 3 a.m. Sammy's, which catered to patrons a year during and immediately after Second World War, was sold last week to the city. It B.C. (HNS) make way for an urban Cranbrook airport's mini- newal terminal is due fcr But as the era of Sammy's ends, ano'uher begins. Much foot expansion and either planing or deplan- the Bowery area known here will cost (he passen- symbol cf alcoholic an additional paid on t i o n i 1 1 be rebuilt. air ticket. blesk storefronts, city's share of the esti- flophouses and bars will expansion which replaced by more lhan include washroom improve- will be about The Follies was founded of Transport rep- Sammy Fuchs in at a recent council Sammy died in April, reported work, includ- "The place just hasn't earth moving on the north- the same without runway extension, was ex- to be completed the end of November toward implemen- of instrument landing procedures. Additional snow equipment including sweeper, plow and chemical truck unit Were expected lo be b-aled at the air- before winter. PICTURE BUTTE Tho fall program is being prepared by the North County Recreation Department. Proposed activities Mail Insurance Un archery, chess, checkers, hockey, Indies' and men's (CP) Maximum fit groups, basketball coverage against loss mixed badminton, and on damage for insured or rcgis- 6 a snowmobile mail posted to Canadian Participation is U.S. destinations will be in- Information leaflets will to S2CO from Oct. 1, available in stores in the post office announced Mon- Those intending lo take in any activity, jjiould send maximum value of their names, as individuals parcels mailed lo Cana- teams, to Ihe recreation post offices will also bo 732-4715, before Oct. I, as to 1200 from 5100. vities will beein the service is available on mail only. ment said last year's figures are considerably lower than the thousands of draft-age males who are supposed to be in Can- ada according to draft dodger and deserter organizations. He said that although the selection system of immigrants was universal, it was probably easier for Americans to gain landed immigrant status be- cause their educational stand- ards were higher than those in other nations. Britain and Ireland had immigrants which represented 20 per cent of the total, followed by the U.S., West Indies with eight per Italy with or six per cent. Latvia sent two immigrants and ended last on the contribut- ing list. U.S.S.R. was among the bottom nations with 112 immi- grants, 93 were women and 78 were above the age of 50. Immigrants from Asia are contributing a high number of professional people to the work force, statistics showed. Immigrants from India. Paki- stan and the Philippines with professional qualifications make up a higher percentage of their national totals than do immi- grants from virtually every Western nation. HEADS THE LIST The Philippines heads the list with out of immi- 44 per to professional jobs. These in- cluded 757 graduate nurses, as rell as 180 medical or dental technicians and 142 teachers. New Zealand and Australia follow, with 36 and 35 per cent respectively of the immigrants from those countries classified as professionals. A majority cf them came as teachers. Tlie next highest proportion of jrclessicnals was contributed by Indian and Pakistan ei 25.6 and 23 per cent respectively. They were ahead of those from .he U.S. which had 22 per cent, Britain with 21 per cent, France 1R per cent, and Netherlands with 15 per cent. A total of 54 per cent of Can- ada's new arrivals came from Suropo lost year ccmpared with three-quarters of Ihe total in 1966. while the proportion arriv- ing from Asia and the West In- lics has risen from 10 per rent .0 23 per cent during the past :ive years. The statistics also show lhat out of the total vho came last year were classi- icd as "non-workers." Mean- vhile the Canadian labor force grew by during Tlie 1869 total of re- 'Iccls a decrease of 12.2 per cent compared to but it vas 23.2 per cent above tho av- erage cf immigration to Canada over the previous ten years. Ontario continues lo attract lie greatest number cf arrivals vith last yenr and Quebec second with 23.2.10. British Columbia is (bird with ollowed by the Prairie Prov- nccs witli Mic Atlantic I'rovinccs with and Yukon md Northwest Territories with .9-1. rSept. plane was a pig pen. Jim Major, the co-pilot, and I cleaned much of it out. Sept. drafted a tele- gram to President Nixon asking Mm to consider the "rightful de- mands" of the commandos. They wanted us to insert this phrase and we complied in the hope that the telegram would get out. Sept. signed the tele- gram in the name of the passen- gers and crew after they had alF read it. I don't know if it ever got off. That evening, 18 of us were told: "Take your coat and hand luggage." We were crammed into a small bus with four armed guards and a Land Hover for an escort. We bumped and banged over a de- sert track, swallowing dust, for over an hour.' We thought we were going to Amman but were taken to the town of Zarqa. When we came to the town, we were taken single file in pitch darkness through a clutter of adobe-like houses and tangles of alleyways. We went through a green doorway and into a courtyard and this was to be our home for the nest days. We called it the country club be- cause we were able to sun our- selves. ISSUES WARNING Sept. guerrilla named Ben-Hasim, a gruff man with cold eyes, told us the hijacked airplanes would be blown up be- cause the guerrillas' demands bad not been met anc! their promise lo blow up the planes had to be kept. Our quarters were two small rooms, one eight by eight feet and the oilier 10 by 10. We had fillhy blankets to sleep on. The cold floor was our Ired. I got diarrhea for four days and I wasn't alone. A Palestinian doctor came every day when we were in the country club. He lold us the women were. safe. He brought some beer, medical supplies and some clothes. Our cook was a great charac- ter. He had worked in West for eight years and could speak to us in pigeon Ger- man. He scrounged boxes of grapes, iresh figs, hot Arab bread and even Pcpsis for us. There were stacks of booklets n the room. They contained pic- ures of Mao Tso-lung and Cockroaches skilled over Ihe earthen floor. The foocl was good, a sort of combination nan and Arab style. But the 'ruit and dishes were not well vashed. We asked for and re- ceived cholera shols. Scpl. heard shooting ror the first time, machine-gun 'ire, about a block away. The guerrillas said King Hus- sein was coming nnd (heir men were fighting him. King Hus- sein, they said, was keeping them from their homeland. Sept. was quiet, At night, Bcn-Hasim told us we were going lo Amman. "We're taking you to a safe place." Our lillle convoy climbed up a steep hill, around winding roads and. stopped at the house we were to be quartered In. There we met 14 other Americans 'in- cluding some of the girls we had last swa on the plane. Sept was the day the shelling began. We could hear it constantly in the distance. Closer lo us was the chatter of machine-guns. We were never lei out of the house until the day each had about three cups of we were released, Sept. 26. Sept. was heavy shelling. The guerrillas said two Jordaiu'an tanks came within 25 yards cf Ihe house but were driven off. There were plenty ol canned goods lliare, some cf Ihem coming from China. We Banker Criticizes Govt. Meddling MONTREA.L (CP) W. Enrlc McLaughlin, chairman acd president of the Royal Hank of Canada, today criticized gov- ernment intervention in the country's banking system. Addressing a session of the first national conference of Ca- nadian bankers, sponsored by the Institute of Canadian Bank- ers, Mr. McLaughlin said: "It seems that once an inter- vention has made, no mat- ter how tough, unjust or unnec- essary, it becomes most diffi- cult to get even a modest ad- justment made in alone have it removed." A massive intervention with the ownership of ttw chartered hanks took place with the re- writing of the Bank Act in 1967, he said. Foreign banks now are in ef- fect tarred from setting up in Canada, whether as incorpo- 5 Foreign banks now are' in ef- fect barred from setting up in Canada, whether as incorpo- rated or unincorporated branches or even as agencies. QUESTIONS STAND "Is the Canadian banking sys- tem so weak that it cannot stand competition from out- side the country? Is it really in the public interest to exclude this competition? "Is it even in the long-term interest of Canadian banks that foreign banks be so totally .ex- cluded from operating in this country? I think not." Mr. McLaughlin said these ownership restrictions encour- abroad upon the foreign opera- tions of Canadian banks. "I have heard no Canadian banker ask for this kind of in- tervention and I have heard several speak against it. But all argument for relaxation have gone unheeded." In particular, he said, pleas to the government to permit for- eign banks at least to operate agencies in Canada have fallen on deaf ears. SUGGESTED LEGISLATION "I have even left, in Ottawa, a draft for legislation suitable for this purpose, but lo no avail." He said the imposition of de- posit insurance on the chartered banks is another clear-cut case of unnecessary intervention. "Certainly the safety record of Canadian banks is unparal- leled and the last tiling that the banks or the depositing pub- lic needed was government-im- posed insurance on the chart1 ercd banks." Like all insurance, deposit in- surance must be paid for and it has added to the cost of bank- ing, said Mr. McLaugluin. "For the banks as a group I would guess the annual prem- ium now totals more than a considerable sum to pay for a service completely 'in- necessary [or the banks' opera- tions." H'aler a day. Sept. sun-up, n shell took oft part of the roof ol the house next door. The guerrillas said that i[ the Jordanians came, they, the guerrillas, would protect us with their own bodies. Madu'nc-gun fire slapped into the wall of tire house and took out chunks of concrete. Oilier houses around us were taking direct hits from artillery shells but somehow this house was missed. Sept. firing was even heavier this day. Most of the time we huddled on the ground. We could peer out a window and saw some burnt out tanks and rounds and rounds of shells slamming into hilltops. The Arabs told us they were de- stroying many tanks. We began seeing some wounded guerril- las. Sept. house next door was hit. The shells crashed :hrough to the courtyard wall. The firing decreased from 'the day before..We asked for a doc- lor and medical supplies but the juerrillas said this was impossi- ble. Sept. was scarce. We were told that the bodies of ,he dead were being burned in the streets. From the kitchen window we could see many fires in a populated part of the city. Sept. shelling now was mostly off in the distance. The guerrillas were claiming vifccory, saying they controlled all of Jordan now except for a iew parts of Amman. We were communicating with them through Sarah Malka, a Su- danese-born American among us who spoke Arabic. Sept. was little shelling of our area bill out of tlie blue one shell whislled into the house door, nnd took off another part of its roof. We were sprayed with the dust and dirt. We wrote out telegrams for President Nixon, the Red Cross and the Pope. The cables ap- pealed for help in attaining a ceasefire so we could be brought out. WATER CUT Sept. guerrillas were talking about their dead sol- diers. The tide of the war seemed to us to be turning against (hem. I wrcte a letter to my wife thinking it might be Uie last one I ever wrote. We were down to two cups of water. Sept. heard we would be released and without any- condition. The pilot, Capt. C. D. Woods, went cut with a guer- rilla girl to arrange the release. In the afternoon, a man came, identified himself as an official of the Egyptian em- bassy. He told us we were be- ing turned over to the Red Cross. We stalled walking down the till. On the way we met a man and a woman, both in anguish and in tears. The man carried a baby and he held the baby out 'or me to take. I couldn't take it. I didn't know what to do. 1 stood thsre staling into his wet eyes for a moment before I turned and continued the de- scent. Sept. rode to the air- port. We took off and the 'chart- ered Swiss airliner circled over ;he desert airstrip with the three shattered hulks of the hi- jacked jetliners. Then it turned io the west. We were free. FOR RENT Building with Sq. Ff. or Less Located on 3rd Avenue with good parking Feasible for any type of business Write Box 24, Lethbridge Herald Starring the famous players from your lovable llthbridge tebel DOES THIS WILL 1 _____ rre VWKIK A BLflNKFT It's GET YOUR" MH8EI-! The Bonanza of 1861 That crazy cast o( characters from the Lethbridge label may not know quartz but they're experts on pints. Especially Lelhbridge Pilsner. It's been a goldmine of flavour for nearly half a century. Rugged, real beer taste in the pioneer tradition. The golden-coloured brew that tasles as good today as it did way back when. So call for Lethbridge Pil. Stake your own claim to Great Moments with Alberta's original Pilsner. TRADITION YOU CAN TASTE FROM THE HOUSE OF LETHBRIDGE ;