JERUSALEM (Aug. 22)
An American Jewish leader, arriving here to help spur the worldwide effort to rescind the stiff new exit charges the Soviet Union has imposed on Jewish intellectuals, said today the US government intends to take some action on the matter. The announcement was made by Jacob Stein of New York, chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. He told reporters at Lydda Airport that the US government “is very seriously concerned with this issue and is thinking through a possible course of action which can produce results.”
Another American Jewish leader, Paul Zuckerman, general chairman of the United Jewish Appeal, reiterated in Tel Aviv that the new Soviet policy was a challenge to the American Jewish community. Prof. Yuval Neeman, president of Tel Aviv University, and head of a special Israeli committee for the Soviet scientists, left for the United States yesterday to seek backing in the American scientific community for the beleaguered Jewish scientists and intellectuals.
Rabbi Meir Kahane, apparently settled permanently in Israel, announced a threat to kidnap Soviet diplomats if the huge exit costs were not cancelled. He told a news conference he had written a letter to US Secretary of State William Rogers in which he said “I don’t have to tell you what an attack on a Soviet diplomat could cause — and how easy it would be to carry out.” But he added an appeal to the US to use “quiet energetic action” to change the Soviet policy.