JERUSALEM (Apr. 5)
Israeli government sources said yesterday that West German Chancellor Willy Brandt’s June 7 visit to Israel is a sign that relations between Israel and West Germany have improved since last fall. The sources did not refer to any specific event that might have been the cause of that improvement but implied that the passage of time since the Sept. 5 Munich tragedy and the freeing of the terrorists at the time of the Lufthansa hijacking had healed some of the wounds between the two States.
Conceding that these incidents had created a degree of strain between Israel and West Germany, the sources described relations between Bonn and Jerusalem in the recent past as “surging upward.” Referring to Chancellor Brandt’s visit, the sources indicated that Israel does not expect West Germany to present any new formula that might suddenly bring the Israelis and the Arabs to the peace table. The sources feel that West Germany, like all other Western European states should continue to do all it can to effect peace negotiations, though negotiations themselves must be left to the parties concerned in the Middle East conflict.