WASHINGTON (May. 16)
Syrian Embassy charged affaires Galeb Kayali accused the United States Government today of encouraging an imminent Israeli attack on Syria. He made the charge immediately following a meeting with Lucius Battle, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs. The Syrian diplomat said he rejected an appeal by Mr. Battle to halt infiltration of Arab saboteurs into Israel because Syria was not able to stop infiltration.
“We know Israel is preparing a new aggression against Syria,” the Syrian diplomat said. “We cannot consider that this could be carried out without the knowledge and blessing of the United States.” He disclosed that Mr. Battle read to him a memorandum expressing concern over the border situation and requesting Syria to refrain from provocations to endanger the armistice including infiltration of terrorists. (U.S. sources disclosed meanwhile that Israel had also been counseled to exercise restraint in the current situation.)
Meanwhile, the Government of Iraq notified the United States that the Iraqi armed forces will “cooperate actively with Syria to repulse any Israeli attack” and asked that this warning be conveyed to Israel, according to reports received here today from Baghdad. Iraqi Foreign Minister Adnan Pachachi has asked not only the United States but also Russia and France to warn Israel. At the same time, Iraqi Defense Minister Mohsen Hussein al Habib called for “united Arab revolutionary action” to drive the Israelis out of Palestine.”
Radio Damascus today challenged U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara to send two million American troops to the Middle East to block a coming “war of liberation” against Israel. The broadcast said “There are six million people in Syria ready to crush them (the Americans).” The broadcast originated at an anti-Israel rally at the University of Damascus.