JERUSALEM (Oct. 15)
Israel’s apprehension regarding the latest developments in Syria increased today following Arab radio broadcasts reporting that the Egyptian troops which reached Syria will be moved not only to the Syrian-Turkish frontier, but also to the Syrian-Israel border.
Israel Foreign Ministry still abstained today from official comments on the landing of Egyptian troops in Syria. Officials said that no authoritative information has been received here yet that Egyptian troops actually have been moved to the Israel border. If the Arab radio reports to this effect prove true, Israel certainly will have something to say on the matter, Foreign Ministry sources stated.
In Israel the feeling prevails that the United States Government must urgently and publicly state it will not tolerate Syrian hostility against Israel, After making such statements in regard to Turkey, Washington’s failure to voice similar assurances with regard to Israel creates the danger of misinterpretation by the Arabs and the possibility that they may miscalculate and make an anti-Israel move.
The Ministry’s experts are studying the legal questions arising from the replacement of Syrian troops by Egyptians along the Israel border–a development which they view as violating the Israel-Syrian armistice agreement. However, they are more concerned over whether the Egyptian troop movements are a relatively minor move or, in fact, part of a major encirclement of Israel by the joint Egyptian-Syrian command.
Mrs. Golda Meir, Israel’s Foreign Minister, is scheduled to arrive in Rome tomorrow for a three-day visit, the Foreign Ministry announced today, She will meet Italian Government leaders in an overall discussion of the Middle East situation. It was indicated no specific issues were scheduled for consideration. (In Rome, Communist Party leader Palmiro Togliatti told the Italian Parliament today that the Soviet Union was not selling arms to the Arab states but that the Western Powers were selling weapons to “Israel, the only aggressive state in the Middle East.”)