American Independence Day Observed in Israel, U.S. Aid Lauded

American Independence Day was observed here today with speeches emphasizing American-Israel friendship and the aid which the Jewish State is receiving from American Jewry and the United States Government.

Tedd Kollek, General Director at the Premier’s office who is in charge of the American grant-in-aid received by Israel, said that “the prudent and honest manner in which Israel has utilized American aid has won this country a great deal of goodwill in the United States.”

Mr. Kollek had high praise for American experts and the staff of the United States Operations Mission which, he said, advised and helped Israel in nearly every sphere of economic activity. He declared that American experts who visited here have become among the best of Israel’s goodwill ambassadors upon their return home, and he expressed Israel’s deep gratitude to these Americans.

The high Israel official stated that, in the last four years, U.S. grants-in-aid to Israel have totaled $226,000,000. These funds, he said, had been matched by Israeli “counterpart” allocations aggregating 237,000,000 Israeli pounds. American aid, he said, amounted to 23 percent of Israel’s total foreign currency budget in the fiscal year 1952-53, and to 12 percent during fiscal year 1953-54, aiding materially toward Israel’s economic stability and independence.

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