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Ben Gurion Sharett Take Grim View of Dulles Testimony Before Senate

Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett today told the Israel Parliament that the views on the Arab-Israel situation expressed by Secretary of State John Foster Dulles in his testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last Friday are “alarming” for Israel, even if they did not represent the “last word” in the policy of the U.S. Government.

On the other hand, he stressed, if this did represent a crystallization of U.S. policy then the stark fact was that Washington was “abandoning Israel to its fate. “He referred to Premier David Ben Gurion’s statement to the House last night that Israel preferred peace to victory, but does not fear the result of a war which might be forced on it. Mr. Ben Gurion also charged Dulles testimony “encouraged the Arab dictators in their hostile attitude to ward Israel.”

Mr. Sharett rejected the Dulles’ advice that Israel put its faith in the United Nations or the Tripartite Declaration. With due respect to the UN and its role in the establishment of the Jewish State, the Foreign Minister said, it had proved helpless to prevent Arab aggression or to make the Arabs respect the UN Charter.

Nor could the Tripartite Declaration substitute for a supply of arms, he continued. “Is it assumed that the Russian-Egyptian Ilyushin bombers will remain poised in the skies of Israel and refrain from dropping bombs while the UN or tripartite signatories consider action? Mr. Sharett asked.

Israel has made it clear to the U.S. he added, that it is entitled to a clear answer on the arms question “within the shortest possible time,” and that the absence of a decision will be regarded as a decision. If Israel’s request goes unanswered, Mr. Sharett underlined, this does not represent a failure of the government’s policy but a failure of international conscience.

As a member of the UN Israel will claim every bit of assistance the UN can give in the case of need, Mr. Sharett declared, but the UN Charter recognizes the inherent right of self-defense. He said that if the Soviet Union sends arms to Egypt and Syria, and if the U.S. sends arms to Iraq and Saudi Arabia, and if Britain arms Jordan and Iraq, and if Israel alone is refused arms, and if in these circumstances the Arabs attack Israel, “then Israel will fight with whatever arms she has and the responsibility will be borne by those who could help Israel in time and did not.”

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