Menu JTA Search

Dayan Threatens to Bolt Party Unless Clear Program for Action in Territories is Adopted

SIGN UP FOR THE JTA DAILY BRIEFING

Moshe Dayan warned last night that he would be unable to stand for the Labor Party in the October elections unless a clear program for action in the administered territories is adopted for the coming four years. Dayan, who spoke to his colleagues in the ex-Rafi section of the party assembled in a hall here to discuss their position in the party, is to meet with Premier Golda Meir and other leaders Thursday to discuss the same subject with them.

Dayan pointed out that by the end of the next Knesset, Israel would have been in the territories for 10 years. A do-nothing approach on the grounds that Israel’s presence there was “only temporary” was to him “utterly unacceptable;” Dayan stressed. He underlined at the same time, however, that he was not enthusiastic about leaving the party and setting up his own list. But, he said, “I would be unable to appear on the Knesset list if the do-nothing views of Mapam and Finance Minister (Pinhas)-Sapir prevail.”

The party, he said, was divided into do-nothingers and those like himself who wanted-the Jewish dynamic to be given full reign in the territories so as to create a new reality and a new kind of relationship with the Arabs. “What we have done there has contributed much more to co-existence than all this talk of a Palestinian – entity,” he said.

WARNS AGAINST MISSING HISTORIC OPPORTUNITY

Dayan said he thought the majority of the Labor Alignment did not back his views, but Deputy Transport Minister Gad Yaacobi said he thought the rank and file leaned to Dayan while the leadership paradoxically was more dovish.

Dayan warned “against missing a one-time historic opportunity for fulfilling Zionism. We may be asked in one hundred years time, ‘What did you do during these years to further the Zionist vision of the Jewish people resettling its ancient homeland?’ If we admit that the green line is sacred and any settlement beyond it is taboo we remove the unique element in this Zionist effort.”

He agreed with Transport Minister Shimon Peres, the Rafi number two man, as to the wide-spread desire for change in Israeli society. Peres reported to the meeting on his “unsatisfactory” meetings with party Secretary General Aharon Yadlin on the fulfillment of the unity program mapped out when Rafi returned to the fold in 1967

Peres advocated national primaries instead of smoky rooms for choosing party candidates to Knesset, Histadrut and party office. Knesseter Mordechai Surkiss, another Rafi leader, recalled that there was still no electoral reform and no direct mayoral. elections despite labor promises.

Reaction to Dayan’s warning was prompt. Moshe Carmel, former leader of Achdut Avoda, a member of the Labor Alignment, said he did not believe Dayan would “risk” running a separate list. Abraham Offer, a Knesset member who is director of Labor’s election campaign, said that the platform was “satisfactory” for all parties in the Labor Alignment. Mrs, Chaika Grossman, a Mapam MK, charged that when a “leading member” of the Alignment makes such a threat, it must be regarded as an attempt to exert pressure for acceptance of his views “and this is undemocratic.”

Yadlin said the 1969 election platform supported settlement in the territories but it was for the Cabinet to decide on each specific suggestion of a new settlement.

NEXT STORY