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“firm Friendship for Israel” Remains Basic U.S. Policy, Sobeloff Says

The policy of “firm friendship for Israel,” enunciated by President Eisenhower last year, remains one of the central factors in the U.S. Government’s approach to the Middle East problem, Simon E. Sobeloff, Solicitor General of the United States, declared here tonight addressing an Israel bond dinner tendered in honor of Israel’s Ambassador Abba Eban and his wife at the Waldorf Astoria.

Declaring that Secretary of State John Foster Dulles “is carefully examining the possible effects of the Egyptian-Czech arms transaction on Israel’s security and on the stability of the Middle East.” Mr. Sobeloff said:

I am permitted by the Secretary of State to say to you that fundamentally he is convinced that mutual fears can best be allayed, not by an arms race, but by collective arrangements committing decisive power to the deterring of aggression by anyone against anyone. In his notable address on August 26th of this year, Mr. Dulles pointed out the advantages that would accrue from a security treaty such as President Eisenhower is willing to recommend.

The recent increase of tension in the area arising from the willingness of the Soviet bloc to offer arms and from the unfortunate readiness of Egypt to accept them makes it all the more urgent to strengthen stability by a treaty or treaties that will guarantee against any attempt to alter frontiers and demarcation lines by force. The Secretary’s suggestion on this point achieves added urgency in the light of the events of the past two weeks,” Mr. Sobeloff stressed.

Declaring that “Israel is a natural ally of America and the other democratic nations,” the Solicitor General called for investment by Americans in Israel bonds. “Nothing is more truly consistent with American character and tradition than for it to recognize the links which exist between America and Israel,” he said. “Our country has repeatedly shown its friendly interest in peoples seeking independence, freedom, and stability. A consideration of the history of these two nations demonstrates how uniquely they parallel each other.”

Ambassador Eban told the audience that there are no problems outstanding between Israel and the Arab states which would for so much as a few weeks survive a mutual decision to solve them by negotiation. “The tragedy of the Middle East,” he said, “lies not only in the Arab refusal to envisage peace and mutual recognition, but, even more acutely, in the painful consciousness of the rich potentiality which lies so close to our common door. If we are denied this fair prospect of conciliation; if conflict and controversy are forced upon us we shall deploy ourselves accordingly.”

Other speakers included Gov. Averell Harriman; Abraham Feinberg, president of the Bond organization Rabbi Irving Miller, chairman of the American Zionist Council Rabbi Mordecai Kirshblum, president of the Mizrachi Organization of America; Samuel Leidesdorf, member of the bond executive and treasurer of the United Jewish Appeal, and Mrs. Israel Goldstein, of the Pioneer Women of America. The dinner launched an intensive three-month drive to sell $10,000,000 worth of bonds in New York City.

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