Menu JTA Search

Former World Bank Head Urges New Administration to Aid Egypt in Reopening Suez

Eugene R. Black, the former president and chairman of the World Bank, has urged the new Administration that takes office next January to assist Egypt in reopening the Suez Canal in the hope of bringing about an eventual settlement in the Middle East. Mr. Black, addressing the Middle East Institute, said that such United States action would represent the kind of policies “which make the exercise of influence possible.” Mr. Black, a special Presidential adviser, said the course he advocated would mean “that more American political leaders will have to sacrifice some partisan appeals here at home in the name of a Middle East settlement.” He added that “it may be that the Arabs have few votes in American elections, but they have a very large voice in their part of the world and economically and commercially the Arab world is very important to the U.S. and vital to all of Europe.”

Mr. Black said it was a fallacy to believe, as many Arabs do, that “the policies of the Israel Government are made in Washington…or that Washington’s Middle East policies are made in Tel Aviv.” He said U.S. influence with Israel was not as great as the Arabs assumed and “the U.S. Government has almost as much difficulty getting its way with Israel as it does with any Arab Government.” He said it was an equal fallacy to assume that Moscow controlled Arab policy and that “the Arab states are willing to become a huge backyard of the Soviet Union.”

NEXT STORY