presses the free market forces and hasnturned the Sephardic Jews (as well asnthe Arab minority) into its obedientnserfs.nWhenever the Sephardic Jews havenbeen able to operate in conditions of anfree market, in the few capitalist islandsnin Israel (and certainly in places likenFrance and Canada), they have donenmuch better than the Ashkenazic Jews.nA recent study released by Tel AvivnUniversity suggests that whereas theneconomic gap between Ashkenazicnand Sephardic Jews in the Israeli publicnsector is as wide as ever, it is actuallynnarrowing dramatically in the privatensector. Moreover, the antireligious policiesnof the Ashkenazic elite helped tondestroy the traditional family base andnproud Jewish identity many of thenSephardic immigrants brought fromnthe Arab countries, and attempted tonimpose on them an alien secular andnsocialist cultural agenda.nAs I suggested in a recent article, thenrelationship between the Socialist Ashkenazicnelite and the Sephardim innIsrael can be compared, if anything, tonthe relationship between the Americannliberal elite and the Southerners andnso-called white ethnics in this country.nLike American Southerners andnCatholics, the Israeli Sephardim havenrebelled against the political culturenthat a snobbish and arrogant elite attemptednto impose on them. Unfortunately,nthe Sephardim have not foundnyet an authentic political outlet forntheir anger and frustration, and havenbeen absorbed by the Ashkenazic-con-nMnOnVnInNnGn/”»n? %n6/CHRONICLESntrolled Likud Party, whose anti-Arabnattitudes reflect Jewish racism importednfrom Eastern Europe.nAs an “Ashkeradic” (i.e., half-Ashkenazic,nhalf-Sephardic) Jew I amnproud of the contributions these twonJewish tribes have made to world civilizationnand to Israel. It is sad to follownattempts by people like Mr. Mehlmannto tarnish the image and to denigrate anJewish community that not only producednsuch giants as Maimonides,nBenjamin Disraeli, David Ricardo, JudahnBenjamin, and Benjamin Cardozo,nas well as an Israeli president andnarmy chief of staff, but is also graduallynand successfully transforming the decayingnstatist political and economicnsystem in Israel.n— Leon T. HadarnWashington, D.C.nMr. Mehlman Replies:nI am surprised that Leon T. Hadar hasninterpreted what I wrote in “Mixing Oilnand Water” as being an exaltation of thenAshkenazic elite. Personally, I thought Inhad been rather hard on them for thenheavy-handed manner in which they,nhandled immigrant flows from NorthnAfrica and the Middle East.nThe point of the article was not sonmuch to make value judgments, butnrather to illustrate the difficulties ofnassimilating disparate cultures into somensort of harmonious union. I believenthere is empirical evidence to suggestnthat both Hispanics and Sephardim, asnj^- LET US KNOW BEFORE YOU GO!n,«, To assure uninterrupted delivery ofnm Chronicles, please notify us in advance. Sendnchange of address on this form with the mailingnlabel from your latest issue of Chronicles to:n# Subscription Department, Chronicles,nP.O. Box 800, Mount Morris, Illinois 61054.nNamen^ Address,n>8a.nCitynStatenZipnnngroups, continue to lag behind Anglosnand Ashkenazim in terms of income,neducational attainment, and other importantnsocial factors. This, to me, is anclear indication that the assimilationnprocess has not worked as it should, andnall parties must share in the blame.nThe article was in no way a whitewashnof the Zionist socialists. If anything,nthe article is extremely critical ofnthe Ashkenazic elite for th paternalisticnand condescending manner in whichnthey greeted their brethren from thenEast. I think the article is quite clear thatnthe second-rate education Israel providednmany Sephardim, the developmentntowns where the ruling socialists “encouraged”nmany Sephardic immigrantsnto settle, contributed to the problemsnmany Sephardim now experience. Thatndoesn’t mean, however, that the culturenand behavior of many Sephardimnhaven’t also contributed to the developmentnof a Sephardic underclass. Largescalensocial failure is almost always ancollaborative effort.nPerhaps the most telling observahonnabout the failure of the assimilationnprocess in Israel is made by Mr. Hadarnhimself He writes, “Unfortunately, thenSephardim have not found yet an authenticnpolitical outlet . . . and havenbeen absorbed by the Ashkenazic controllednLikud Party.” Why, after morenthan a quarter of a century as thenmajority population of Israel, haven’tnthe Sephardim found their politicalnvoice? Perhaps more importantly, whynafter 42 years of independence does anJewish state still have political partiesnthat represent ethnic interests?nI admit that I believe that the interestsnof both Israel and the United States arenbest served by maintaining the dominancenof their European cultures. Israel’snlot is inexorably cast with the West,nif for no other reason that it will neverngain the acceptance of its neighbors innthe East. I also believe that the Europeannculture of the United States helpednmake this country the richest, strongest,nand freest society mankind has evernknown. That is not to say that there isn’tna lot of room for improvement or thatnthere aren’t things of value we can learnnfrom other cultures. However, I seennothing wrong with asking those whoncome here to enjoy the benefits of thisnsociety to embrace the basic values ofnthe dominant culture.n