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Leaders See U.S. Interests Hurt by Arab Anti-israel Boycott

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The recent termination by Regie Renault. French automobile manufacturers, of the firm’s business relations with the Kaiser-Frazer car assembly plant in Israel, was denounced here today by leaders of 17 major American Jewish organizations as “capitulation” to Arab pressures and “harmful to American and United Nations efforts toward stability in the Middle East and toward world peace.”

Pointing out that the Renault Company has admitted that it withdrew from Israel “because of pressure from the Arab League Boycott Office,” and that, subsequently, Renault was taken off the Arab League’s blacklist, the statement declared:

“It is gratifying to note the large number of enterprises throughout the world that have refused to surrender to the boycott. It is unfortunate, however, that some, like Renault, have seen fit to yield to the Arab League boycott.

“The Arab League boycott also makes it impossible to achieve progress toward peace in the Middle East. UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold has characterized the boycott as a ‘dead weight upon our efforts,’ It is a form of political and economic aggression that creates and maintains tension in the Middle East. By keeping the Middle East in a state of near war, the boycott is a continuing threat to world peace. So long as the boycott lasts, interests vital to America are Jeopardized.

“The boycott has brought about violations of the rights of American citizenship and interference with the freedoms to trade, invest and travel. Because the boycott imposes unnecessary expenditures and economic losses upon all the countries of the Middle East, it subverts the purposes of United States economic assistance and makes the Middle East more dependent upon such American aid. Arab League economic warfare therefore places unnecessary and additional burdens upon the American taxpayer.

“We shall continue to expose these evils in the conviction that on political and economic, as well as moral grounds, the Arab League boycott must be resisted by the United States Government, by American business, and by the American public.”

The statement was signed by the following presidents: Bernard Aharns, Jewish War Veterans of the United States; Rabbi Philip S, Bernstein, American Israel Public Affairs Committee; Dr. Maurice N. Eisendrath, Union of American Hebrew Congregations; Moe Falikman, American Trade Union Council for Labor Israel; Moses I. Feuerstein. Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America; Dr. Miriam Freund, Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America.

Also, Mrs. Rose L. Halprin, Jewish Agency for Israel; Adolph Held, Jewish Labor Committee; Mrs. Charles Hymes, National Council of Jewish Women; Bernath L. Jacobs. United Synagogue of America; Label Katz, B’nai B’rith; Mrs. Clara Leff, Labor Zionist Assembly; Rabbi Irving Miller, American Zionist Council; Rabbi Joachim Prinz, American Jewish Congress; Abrahan Redelheim, Zionist Organization of America; Rabbi Isaac Stollmau, Mizrachi-Hapoel Hamizrachi; and David Ullman, National Community Relations Advisory Council.

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