WASHINGTON (Sep. 1)
Jordanian diplomats have informed the United States that the Soviet Union has offered Jordan modern arms, including supersonic Jet planes, and asked if America is willing to provide similar arms.
Jordan said it would prefer to update its military posture with equipment from the United States, but might turn to the USSR if Washington fails to act. There was no doubt here whatever that the planned modernization of the Jordanian air force was intended as a counter to Israel’s fast, French-made Mirage jet aircraft.
State Department sources indicated apprehension lest Israel seek “balancing arms” in the event of a decision to help modernize the Jordanian army and air force. The traditional sources of Jordanian arms have been Great Britain and the United States.
(A dispatch received today by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency from Bonn reported that Jordan’s King Hussein has decided to visit West Germany in November. Hussein, according to the report, is interested in tightening relations with West Germany, and will discuss Israeli Jordan affairs in general as well as steps for the strengthening of Jordan’s military potential.)