State Dept. to Hear Zionist Views on Giving Arms to Iraq

Henry A. Byroade, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, today consented to meet Thursday with chairman Louis Lipsky of the American Zionist Committee for Public Affairs and a delegation of leaders representing constituent groups of the committee. The delegation will seek to inform Mr. Byroade of the views of many Americans on the newly-announced State Department decision to grant U. S. munitions to Iraq.

It was learned here today that a large part of the arms which America will supply free to Iraq in line with the U. S. -Iraqi agreement announced yesterday will be purchased from Britain. Such purchases, it was noted, would be part of the United States offshore procurement program designed to spread American military contracts among allied countries abroad to help them build up their military production potential and their economies. Britain has been chosen for supplying Iraq because the Iraqi forces are already equipped with British weapons.

Meanwhile, American officials have said that there would be no announcement of the amount or nature of military aid to be supplied to Iraq or any other state in the Middle East since military appropriations for the region are lumped in one unit.

(In Israel, the press this morning was extremely critical of the United States decision to grant arms to Iraq, charging that the American Government had broken its promise not to give the Arab states arms unless they guaranteed not to use them against Israel. Davar, the pro-government Labor newspaper, said that the U.S. was using “all ways to buy the Arab world’s friendship” therefore it “prefers to supply arms without any conditions” concerning their usage.)

NEXT STORY