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Arab Nationalism Termed One of Reasons for Increased Tension in Middle East

The tensions extant in the Middle East are analyzed today by the New York Times in an editorial which says that some of the reasons for these tensions “stem from the rise of Arab nationalism,” but points out that the main reason is “the continuing disparity between the military power of the West and that of the Soviet bloc.”

“The Middle East, which contains not only half the world’s known oil reserves but also the traditional land and water routes from West to East, is too important to be surrendered by default,” the Times says. “The British, who stripped their home defenses to hold the Middle East in two world wars, are well aware of this. So are the Russians, who stretched out their hands for positions in that region immediately after the last war. Fortunately, the latest reports suggest that the growing Soviet menace is inducing the Middle Eastern Governments to entertain some sober second thoughts about a game that can be continued only at their peril. Thus there are indications that the British-Egyptian dispute may be approaching a solution.”

Another editorial in the same issue dealing with the failure of the U.N. General Assembly to settle the problem of the status of Jerusalem at its present session, says: “Technically, the Assembly is still on record as establishing a separate international enclave for Jerusalem and its environs, while, realistically, that development is a manifest impossibility in view of the refusal of both Israel and Jordan to cooperate in such a plan. It has never seemed to us that creation of a political entity under U.N. control was necessary or even desirable to protect the holy places.”

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