Menu JTA Search

Eisenhower Asked to Effect a Change in U.S. Middle East Policy

SIGN UP FOR THE JTA DAILY BRIEFING

American Jewish groups appealed today to President Eisenhower to change the State Department’s Middle East policy, which is considered strongly pro-Arab and unfriendly to Israel.

Addressing a press conference, Rabbi Irving Miller, chairman of the American Zionist Council, pointed out that today’s announcement by President Eisenhower that he intends to run for another term, means that he has assumed a full measure of responsibility for all acts of the Administration and that the Arab-Israel issue “may now fairly be placed in the lap” of the President.

Rabbi Miller said that Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, in his testimony on the situation in the Middle East before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last Friday, “enunciated new doctrines which can only lead to disaster not only for Israel and the Middle East but for our own country and the Free World as well. He pointed out that, “if there are to be no defensive arms for Israel, if Israel is not to receive a security guarantee from America, the net result must be a seriously weakened Israel facing Arab States armed to the teeth by the Communist world. Whose interests would be served by such a weakened Israel–American interests or those of the Soviet Union?” he asked.

“The question of war or peace in the Middle East is now in the hands of President Eisenhower and Secretary Dulles,” Rabbi Miller stated. “Either the United States will immediately grant arms to Israel in order to serve notice upon potential aggressors that their aggression will be highly unprofitable or it will refuse to grant to Israel the necessary arms, thus tacitly giving the ‘go ahead’ signal to the Arab aggressors. Americans should not long be left in the dark with respect to our government’s intentions in an area so vital to the security of our own country,” he said.

URGED TO EXERCISE “PERSONAL LEADERSHIP” TO AVERT WAR ON ISRAEL

An appeal to President Eisenhower urging him to exercise “personal leadership” to avert a possible war by the Arab countries against Israel was voiced by Baruch Zukerman, chairman of the Zionist Labor Assembly, which represents 80,000 people affiliated with the Labor Zionist movement in this country.

“What shall other exposed nations think, whose protectors against the menace of Communism and other aggressive forces we profess to be, when they see Israel’s hostile neighbors daily receiving arms intended for her destruction, not only from the Soviet world but also from the Western Powers and new from our own United States, while Israel’s desperate plea for the means of her legitimate self-defense go unheeded,” Mr. Zukerman asked in his telegram to the President.

A demand on President Eisenhower to take charge and change “the State Department’s disastrous policy in the Middle East” was voiced at a meeting here this evening, sponsored by the newly formed Committee to Save the Middle East from Communism. Speakers asserted that the statements made by Secretary of State Dulles before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last Friday have demonstrated the conspicuous failure of the State Department’s policy in the Middle East.

Adolph Held, national chairman of the Jewish Labor Committee, strongly criticized Secretary Dulles and the position which the State Department has taken in banning Jews from assignments to U.S. military bases in Saudi Arabia at the request of the ruler of that country. He called it “a surrender to religious bigotry” and said that this action by the State Department violates “the basic tenets not alone of our foreign policy but of our Constitution. “Protests against Mr. Dulles’ policy were also voiced by Leo Wolfson, president of the Zionists, Revisionists of American.

NEXT STORY