TEL AVIV (Dec. 6)
Premier Levi Eshkol told an Israel Press luncheon today that there was a “basic disadvantage” to Israel in the United Nations peacekeeping machinery in the Middle East in that the same yardstick was used for the attacker and the victim.
Commenting on the Security Council session Friday on complaints and counter-complaints by Israel and Syria growing out of the November 13 tank and air clash at Israel’s northern border, the Premier said Israel could not permit attacks on its settlements or agree that topographic advantages should give attackers immunity from “our active defense.” Many Syrian gun positions on the northern border are at a higher level than nearby Israeli territory.
He said that the difference between the initial attack on an Israel patrol on November 13 and later on peaceful settlements by the Syrians and “that of our defense” should have been clear to various representatives at the United Nations. Under the cover of “false equality,” he told the luncheon, the United Nations hesitates to condemn the attacker.
He noted that the Russians had supported the Arabs in the disputes even though it was the Soviet Union which recently proposed that no international problem should be solved by force.
Answering questions, the Premier said that Israel continued to maintain its deterrent power as the best way to prevent war. He said he would be meeting with West German Chancellor Ludwig Erhard in the near future but declined to discuss the topics he will bring up, commenting that these were “self-understood.”
He declined to discuss the current dispute within his Mapai Party on Pinhas Lavon and spoke only briefly on the matter of alignment of Mapai with Achdah in a limited labor front. On the latter matter, he said only that it was a “protracted issue” but that eventually alignment would be achieved.