Israeli Press Hides News of Aide’s Suicide from Ailing Ben Gurion

The newspapers of Israel entered into a rare conspiracy of silence to keep from Premier David Ben Gurion today the news that his military aide and close friend, Col. Nehemia Argov, had committed suicide. The newspapers printed special limited editions for distribution in Hadassah Hospital where the Premier is confined in which no reference was made to the story.

Col Argov, 43 committed suicide yesterday after his car struck a cyclist on the Tel Aviv Jerusalem road. He had picked up the victim, a laborer, and rushed him to the hospital waiting there for several hours for a report on the man’s condition. When told it was serious he went home, drew up a will leaving his possessions to the injured man or to his family if he died of his injuries, wrote a farewell note to Mr. Ben Gurion and shot himself in the head. Last night, the injured cyclist was reported to be out of danger.

Mr. Ben Gurion who had suffered a relapse after operations for removal of bomb splinters had a high fever yesterday and his doctors were afraid to expose him to shock. Today his temperature had subsided and his medical advisers agreed that the news could be broken to him tomorrow and he could be given his aide’s farewell letter.

Today, Mr Ben Gurion received Danny Kaye, the American comedian, and later had a talk at the hospital with the United States Secretary of Agriculture, Ezra Taft Benson, who was on a one-day visit to Israel. With him was William Baxter, the U.S. Charged Affaires.

Mr. Benson said he had brought Mr. Ben Gurion President Eisenhower’s good wishes for speedy recovery and lauded the “wonderful spirit” shown by the wounded Prime Minister.

BADLY WOUNDED MINISTER OUT OF BED FOR FEW MINUTES

Hadassah Hospital reported today that Minister of Religion Moshe Shapira, the most severely wounded of the would-be assassin’s victims last week, had improved so well that he was permitted to leave his bed for a few minutes today. Moshe Carmel, the Minister of Transport, was expected to leave the hospital in the course of this week.

Meanwhile, as the Knesset resumed sessions, worried security officers closed the public entrance and gallery from which the bomb was thrown last week, barring the public from the Knesset deliberations. A cordon of armed policemen was also thrown around the Knesset building.

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