TOLEDO, Ohio (Jun. 10)
Israel Ambassador Abba Eban said tonight that “there is no doubt at all that the American-Iraq arms agreement and a constant verbal disparagement of Israel’s most cherished sentiments and associations contradict the basic purposes of friendship and peace which the United States Government has sincerely reiterated. “
Mr. Eban spoke at a dinner here, sponsored by the Israel Bond organization. His address was interpreted by observers as an answer to recent remarks by Henry A. Byroade, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs.
“Israel’s security faces a double danger–the increase of Arab hostility and the effects of recent developments in the policies of the great powers,” Mr. Eban said. “Arab hostility is inevitably increased by obsequious deference to their alleged fears of Israel, as well as by the conclusion of military arrangements with the most violent and extremist Arab governments. The effects of such a policy cannot be cured by offering arms to the Arabs and verbal assurances to Israel.
“Recent statements by American leaders in favor of friendship for Israel and peace in the Middle East are important insofar as they furnish an agreed basis of principle on which America and Israel can examine their positions and policies. So long as there is a commonly declared objective there is hope of eliminating acts which prejudice that objective. The task is now to see how far certain recent actions and utterances conform with declared aims of policy. “
“There is no doubt at all, ” Mr. Eban continued, “that the American-Iraq arms agreement and a constant verbal disparagement of Israel’s most cherished sentiments and associations contradict the basic purposes of friendship and peace which the United States Government has sincerely reiterated. Individual acts of policy should surely be brought into harmony with basic principles. The stability of the Middle East requires an early effort to repair the harm done to Israel’s confidence and security.”
Ambassador Eban said the crux of the problem was that the Arab states refuse to make peace with Israel whereas Israel desires friendly relations. He said this was the meaning of “Jordan’s headlong flight from her armistice obligations and from the table of the Security Council. “
He told the Toledo Community that there was no surer way of defending Israel’s security than by increasing her economic strength and productivity. “For this reason,” he said, Israelis “can neither rest themselves, nor invite their friends in the Jewish communities to celebrate any respites from the task of consolidation. “