WASHINGTON (Jun. 16)
Egypt and Syria have agreed on certain joint military steps in the Arab plan for an eventual war against Israel, the official Iraqi radio reported.
The report, confirmed by neither Cairo nor Damascus, said that Egypt would set up two military air bases in Syria and give that country items of Soviet military equipment held back after Syria quit the United Arab Republic in 1961. The equipment reportedly includes three submarines. The Baghdad reports said that, in return, Syria pledged to reinstate certain pro-Nasser army officers purged from the Syrian army and dismiss Communist officers who gained power since extreme leftists took control in Syria last February.
Evidently angered at the speech by King Hussein of Jordan this week, opposing the Palestine Liberation Organization as an “extremist” body and proposing the possible integration of the Arab refugees in the Arab countries where they are maintained in camps operated by the United Nations, Egypt’s President Nasser attacked Hussein indirectly in an address yesterday. He declared that Egypt can no longer look toward “Arab coexistence” with “reactionary” Arab states.
Nasser’s address, reported in dispatches today, was delivered at Damanhur, 100 miles north of Cairo. For the first time, Nasser placed the Arab fight against Israel in second place, insisting that Arab “progressivism” must take top priority. “Arab reactionary elements, “he said, “cannot march with progressive forces, even if the road leads to the liberation of Palestine, because progressive forces see in the reactionaries a danger even greater than Israel itself.”