WASHINGTON (Apr. 8)
The State Department is nearer a decision to furnish modern new arms to Jordan than it is ready to respond to Israel’s application, it was learned today from high Government sources. These sources said that Israel’s needs are being considered but that American authorities are convinced that Israeli forces are well-prepared and adequately equipped. The State Department is willing to consider the supply of some equipment to Israel, however, to a void an imbalance if evaluations show that a balance no longer exists. Talks are in progress with both Jordan and Israel.
(The New York Times said today that the U. S. A. and Jordan are nearing agreement on American supply of additional arms to Jordan, including tanks, to help modernize Jordan’s army. At the same time, the newspaper stated in a Washington dispatch, agreement is expected on Israeli purchase of American arms. Jordan’s request reportedly includes M-448 medium tanks. Jordan’s Brig. Gen. Amer Kamash, chief of plans and operations of the Jordanian army was reported to have been in Washington for the past week, “working out the final details” of a U. S. arms deal with Amman.)
Officially, the State Department said today: “As we have stated on many occasions in the past, we neither confirm requests for military equipment nor talks about such equipment. We do not think it is desirable to speculate in any way about the possibility of such requests or discussion of them.”