U.S. Sixth Fleet Bars Beirut Shore Leave for Jewish Sailors

The U.S. Sixth Fleet, operating in Mediterranean waters, has published formal, written regulations concerning the restriction of Jewish personnel from shore liberty at Beirut, Lebanon, but these orders are apparently not being consistently enforced, it was learned here today.

A Navy Department spokesman officially and categorically denied both the existence and enforcement in any instance of such orders. However, details obtained from reliable sources said that copies of the regulations were aboard every ship of the Sixth Fleet, although the orders were in fact only haphazardly applied. One interpretation was that the orders were of an “advisory” rather than “mandatory” nature, and subject to the discretion of the captain of each ship.

On some ships, apparently, Jewish personnel may be refused shore leave for “diplomatic reasons” because of the Arab-inspired ban. On other vessels, the regulations are ignored, and Jews granted the same shore privileges accorded to other men.

A question of application seems to hinge on whether the Jewish personnel are “transient,” in which case most captains seemingly ignore the regulations.

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