LOS ANGELES (Dec. 26)
Prof. Edward Teller, the “father of the H-bomb” believes Israel’s Tel Aviv University “ranks today higher than the best universities, or at least the most famous universities in the United States.” He said that American investors in Israeli science-based industries “would find more talent in Tel Aviv University than in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.”
Dr. Teller, a professor of nuclear physics at the University of California, Berkeley, made that statement in a taped interview at the Berkeley campus with Victor M, Carter and Boris Young. A transcript of the interview was distributed to guests at the inaugural dinner for the Western States American Friends of Tel Aviv University. Carter, who is a member of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency was installed as president of the new organization and Young, former head of the Israel Bond Organization on the West Coast was installed as executive director.
Dr. Teller, who has been a controversial figure in the U.S. for his hawkish and conservative political views, said that “All universities have suffered badly from student unrest, from the anti-technological movement whose corrosive effects are beginning to affect American commerce and American defense.” He said, “The disease has spread to Europe–German universities are in an awful state. But it has not affected Israel, because Israel has been founded by intellectuals, and there is no casts system in Israel that separates Israel from the people or the people from the State. This is why their universities are building up while ours are rapidly declining.”
According to the Hungarian-born scientist, Israeli students who have served in the Army “are not the rebellious type that are practically ripping our and other universities apart.” He said they “wanted the privilege of studying and Israelis know how to treat these advantages.”