WASHINGTON (Sep. 10)
Philip M. Klutznick, who served in the U.S. delegation to the United Nations and is a past president of B’nai B’rith, said today in an address to the triennial B’nai B’rith convention here that he appreciated the remarks of presidential candidates on Israel but thought that there was something “abnormal in this relationship with Israel” in that the issue of military needs “has to be aired in a national election campaign.”
Mr. Klutznick asserted that with other democratic nations, friendly to America and resisting Soviet pressures, “we would have acted long ago or we would have long ago united such a nation into a mutual security pact so the other side would know our intentions clearly and unmistakably.”
He held that “after 20 years, Israel’s relationship with other nations, including the United States, should be normalized.” He asserted that “states are sovereign, not Jewish, Catholic, or Moslem.”
Both presidential candidates, Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey and former Vice President Richard M. Nixon, addressed the B’nai B’rith convention Sunday and made strong statements of support for Israel. Both said the United States should provide Israel with the Phantom jet fighter planes Israel seeks to maintain deterrent strength.
(The New York Times, in an editorial today, sharply criticized Mr. Nixon’s demand that Israel be given a technological military margin. It said this was “a promise to scrap the existing American policy of trying to maintain a rough military balance between Israel and the Arab states and apportioning arms aid accordingly.” It warned of the danger of an arms race with Moscow and the danger of escalation of Soviet help for the Arabs. “The American commitment to Israel’s security is clear and outside political debate,” the editorial concluded. “But Mr. Nixon now seems ready to go well beyond that basic pledge to project a new, dangerous, open-ended and ultimately self-defeating commitment.”)
Dore Schary, chairman of the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, cautioned the American-Jewish community not to exaggerate fears of Negro anti-Semitism. “The black community is not partial to or organized against the Jew,” he said. “Let us be crystal clear–the statements of a few must not be attributed to an entire people. Negro anti-Semitism presents none of the dangers of fascism.” Mr. Schary contended that the greater danger came from “the radical right of the white extremists who stand for repression of the Negro and the Jews.”
The convention received a report today from a convention committee that urged emergency steps to overcome a critical shortage in Jewish communal service workers. It was disclosed that 3,500 vacancies are going unfilled. The report told of the urgent need for social and group workers, guidance counsellors and rabbis. A recommendation was made that B’nai B’rith establish a special scholarship program to create a “Jewish civil service”. The program would begin by alleviating needs of Hillel Foundations, the B’nai B’rith Youth Organization and other B’nai B’rith agencies that “desperately feel the pinch.” This would be done by giving educational assistance to qualified Jewish youths on a basis of a year of college for a pledge of a year’s service on B’nai B’rith staff.
The recommendations also included a summer interne program during vacations from school. It was noted that Jewish institutions must compete with government, private industry, and universities to attract summer “interns.” The study concluded that the first prerequisite is for proper motivation to develop a concept of service to the Jewish community. This must begin at the start of college training, it was thought. Inadequately motivated youths can fill jobs “but not the void in Jewish cultural growth.”