WASHINGTON (Feb. 29)
State Department spokesman Lincoln White today sought to deny American Jewish Congress charges that the Department discriminates against Americans of Jewish faith in assignment of U.S. personnel to Moslem countries.
Despite evidence to the contrary, Mr. White contended that the United States has made no anti-Jewish agreement with Saudi Arabia. He said the United States denied the existence of any arrangement with Saudi Arabia to bar American military personnel of Jewish faith from that country. He added, however, that Saudi Arabia “in exercise of its sovereign rights” had “normally refused to issue entry visas to persons of Jewish faith.”
Although highly placed individuals in the executive department are fighting a new policy to bar Jews from assignment to Pakistan, Mr. White contended that no such discrimination existed. He offered as “proof” the comment that some U.S. officers who have served in Pakistan recalled there were some Jews there. (The issue involving Pakistan pertains to a new policy that emerged in recent weeks when an individual was informed he could not be assigned to Pakistan because he was Jewish.)
While defending Moslem states from charges of anti-Jewish practices, Mr. White said “the United States does not condone discriminatory actions by foreign governments against its citizens on grounds of race or creed and it makes every effort to eliminate through friendly means all such practices.”