WASHINGTON (Dec. 15)
Congress killed today the Jackson amendment authorizing $500 million in military credits for Israel. In approving the Defense Appropriations Act, both branches accepted a Senate-House conference committee report which withdrew the measure sponsored by Sen. Henry M. Jackson (D., Wash.) on the grounds that the same sum was available to Israel in the continuing resolution for foreign aid now pending before both houses.
The House voted 292-39 to accept the conference committee report. It was approved by voice vote in the Senate which only last month voted 82-14 to accept the Jackson measure. The House never voted on it.
Proponents of the Jackson amendment expressed satisfaction today that despite its elimination, Israel will still be in a position to receive $500 million credit for military purchases in the US. The continuing resolution authorizes the administration to continue foreign assistance expenditures in fiscal 1972 at the same rate as in fiscal 1971. It will be voted on in the House late today and is expected to come before the Senate before the Christmas recess. The 1971 legislation incorporated the first Jackson amendment authorizing $500 million in credits for Israel, a sum that has since been spent.
The second Jackson amendment killed today was regarded by its supporters as insurance in the event that a foreign aid bill without funds for Israel is adopted. Half of the sum–$250 million–was earmarked by Jackson for the purchase of additional Phantom jets by Israel. An aide to Jackson told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that the Senator has pledged to continue to fight to maintain the $500 million level of military credits for Israel, at least for the balance of this fiscal year which ends June 30, 1972.
Proponents of the Jackson amendment pointed out two weeks ago that its approval by the Senate-House conference committee was uncertain because four of the Senators on the committee had voted against it and only six of the 12 House members had co-sponsored a resolution urging the administration to sell more Phantoms to Israel.