WASHINGTON (Jul. 4)
President Eisenhower yesterday described the furnishing of submarines by the Soviet Union to Egypt as “unhelpful” to the cause of peace and stability in the Middle East. His comment was elicited by a question put to him by a Jewish Telegraphic Agency reporter at a White House press conference.
The President indicated he could not comment at length but made known his definitely negative response to Egypt’s acquisition of Soviet submarines. Official sources meanwhile indicated that the closest possible observation of the submarines is being maintained. The President is kept informed.
Francis O. Wilcox, Assistant Secretary of State for International Affairs, addressing a convention of the American Association of University Women in Boston, cautioned that the Middle East remains a tinder box where rash and ill-considered action could have serious results.” In his view “we can take it for granted that the Soviet Union will continue to fish in troubled waters.” He pointed out that “the recent sale of Soviet submarines to Egypt is but another in a long series of incidents obviously designed to increase tensions in that area.”
Mr. Wilcox reported that there continues to be “a pall of fear hanging over the heads of the Arab and Israeli people alike.” Everything possible must be done “to develop a will to peace in the Middle East,” he said. Without such a will a settlement of long range problems cannot be achieved, he stressed.