Rabin Says U.S. Will Not Ask Israel to Alter Its Mideast Position

Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, Itzhak Rabin, said here that while there were differences between the U.S. and Israel on various issues, the U.S. would not urge Israel to “budge an inch” from its stand in the Middle East dispute. Gen. Rabin, addressing the Tel Aviv Press Club said the American position was much closer to Israel’s than that of Soviet Russia and that Washington showed a “practical understanding of Israel’s defense needs” and the need to prevent an imbalance of power in the Middle East as long as the Arabs were unwilling to move toward peace.

Gen. Rabin said that the differences between Israel and the U.S. were not over maps but rather “they ask that we show initiative, seek solutions and display flexibility to achieve them. They do not consider the means important, only the final result.” Nevertheless, Gen. Rabin said, there is growing doubt in Washington over Arab readiness to make peace. He said the U.S. was particularly sensitive with respect to the security of Lebanon. “But that does not mean that Israel must accept sabotage originating in Lebanon.”

Gen. Rabin said he believed both the U.S. and the Soviet Union are interested in preventing another Mideast war at this time, though for different reasons. In this context they will not abandon their search for a peaceful settlement, he said.

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