Jerusalem Satisfied with Veto

The Foreign Ministry spokesman welcomed Thursday night the United States veto of the “non aligned”Security Council resolution. Other observers in Jerusalem, however, wondered whether it might not have been wiser to have been satisfied with a U.S. abstention on a watered down resolution that would not have highlighted so starkly Washington’s isolation in its support for Israel.

It was suggested here that Israel may have played into Egypt’s hands by pressing for the American veto. It might have been better for Israel had it agreed to American attempts to water down the Egyptian draft without demanding that Washington resort to the extreme measure of imposing its veto, these observers thought.

The Foreign Ministry’s statement read: “The blocking of the unbalanced and unjust resolution proposed at the Security Council prevented a serious blow at peace prospects in the Middle East by its vote, the United States saved the chance for negotiations, prevented the effective abrogation of Resolution 242 as an agreed basis between the parties and enabled Secretary General(Kurt) Waldheim to make his trip to the Middle East next month without unnecessary obstacles.

“When the Security Council vote is seen in the context of other recent events on the international stage (the Nixon Brezhnev summit, the European security conference, the International Labour Organization meeting in Geneva) a clear picture emerges: that there is no possibility of breaking through the deadlock by public invective in international forums.

“On the other hand, the gates to negotiations between Israel and Egypt are wide open and it is to be hoped that Egypt, which initiated this sterile debate, will now study the need for negotiations.” Israeli diplomats in several of the Council member states, including Britain and France, will now be instructed to register Israel’s displeasure at these states support for the anti Israeli resolution, Jerusalem sources said.

(In New York, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and the Anti Defamation League of B’nai B’rith sent messages to John Scali, U.S. Ambassador to the UN, praising his action in vetoing the resolution and noting that his action marked a continued search for peace in the Middle East.)

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