WASHINGTON, (May. 4)
Although Congressmen last week reported a State Department tendency to restore Israel to the list of “special assistance” nations, C. Douglas Dillon, Undersecretary of State for Economic Affairs, omitted Israel today when he recited anew the list of nations “specifically in mind.” Mr. Dillon, who testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, explained that grant assistance was intended for countries which could not operate otherwise.
Meanwhile, the State Department submitted to the Senate Committee an official presentation showing that Israel enjoyed the highest per capita gross national product ($882) of all independent countries in Africa and Asia created since World War II. Israel also had the highest annual rate of growth of any of the 21 nations listed. The country with the gross national product next highest was Lebanon with $419. Jordan had only $102 per capita. The study was based on the year 1957.
Mr. Dillon told the committee that special assistance “is programmed for certain countries where we wish to achieve special political, economic, humanitarian or other objectives which cannot be gained from technical cooperation or the Development Loan Fund. These include countries of great importance to us, such as Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Jordan, Ethiopia, and the Sudan–and beleaguered West Berlin.”
“NO APPARENT PROGRESS” IN ARAB-ISRAEL RELATIONS
In the summary presentation made to the committee by the executive department, it was stated that “the Arab States and Israel made no apparent progress toward resolving their bitter differences and disputes. Palestine refugees, grown almost to a million in number of which about half are under 15 years of age, still wait for some solution to their harsh and homeless existence.”
The material submitted by Mr. Dillon noted the achievements of the United Arab Republic, stating that “the age-old dream of an Arab nation took on the beginnings of reality in the Spring of 1958 when Syria and Egypt merged to form the United Arab Republic.”
The statement on accomplishments of the special assistance program listed a conclusion that because of this program Jordan had remained independent. It was reported that the Soviet economic and political offensive in the area had increased in the past year. Committee chairman J. W. Fulbright expressed a view that if a long-term effective aid program were delayed, the whole Near East might go down the drain.