WASHINGTON (Jul. 14)
As the Americans and Vietnamese are pulling out of Cambodia, the Israelis are staying, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency learned yesterday. A four man international cooperation project in Cambodia is staying to continue organizing Cambodian farmers and helping them use modern farming methods in the Mekong River area. “The men have instructions not to pull out as long as they can possibly fulfill their mission: to fight hunger,” an Israeli embassy spokesman said. The Israelis have been in Cambodia for almost four years, organizing farmers cooperatives for marketing, consuming and using water, and running experimental farms where new strains of old crops–such as rice–and new crops are grown and demonstrated. They were invited into the area by the Mekong River Committee, an outgrowth of the United Nations’ Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East. The Israeli ambassador to Nam Phen has the final word on when these farmers in their experimental farm fifteen miles north of Nam Phen are to be evacuated. Their families left last month when fighting broke out near the capitol. According to an Israeli spokesman, the Cambodian farmers working with the Israelis have made plans to defend their farm if the Communists get close.