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Eban: Rogers’ Promise to Review Us Military Commitment to Israel Encouraging but Not Firm Decision

Foreign Minister Abba Eban of Israel said here tonight that US Secretary of State William P. Rogers’ promise to review American military commitments to Israel in light of Soviet pledges to strengthen Egypt was important and encouraging but cautioned that it did not amount to a firm decision which Israel regards as urgent. Eban was here to receive the American Jewish Congress’ Stephen S. Wise Award for distinguished achievement in advancing the dignity, freedom and security of the Jewish people. The award was presented to him by AJCongress president Rabbi Arthur J. Lelyveld.

Eban denounced the Soviet-Egyptian joint communique issued in Moscow last week which, he said, excluded the three most essential ideas–peace, negotiations with Israel and a will to break the present deadlock. He said the root of the deadlock was the Arab illusion that time was working against Israel. That, according to Eban was patently untrue. The Foreign Minister made similar remarks last night in his address to the triennial convention of B’nai B’rith in Philadelphia.