Katzir Lauds Ford for Stand He Has Taken on Arab Boycott

President Ephraim Katzir of Israel hailed President Ford here tonight for the “remarkable stand” he has taken on the Arab boycott of Jewish-owned banks. The Israeli leader, who was guest of honor at a dinner inaugurating the 1975 Israel Bond campaign, told 1000 Jewish leaders from the U.S. and Canada assembled at the Fontainebleau Hotel that Israel also was deeply grateful to the President, to Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger and to the American people for giving Israel continued scientific, technological, economic and defense aid.

Katzir, who will meet President Ford at the White House tomorrow denounced the spread of the Arab boycott and what he called the new Arab anti-Semitism. He warned that “Anti-Semitism, which starts with attacking Jews, eventually turns to the wider aim of destroying human freedom and modern democracy.”

He told the Jewish leaders that Israel is facing many serious economic and political problems. “We have tightened our belts,” he said, “and we are now paying the highest taxes in the world.” But, he added, “the spirit of the people of Israel is high, despite the problems in our struggle for peace. We have survived before and we shall survive again.”

Katzir congratulated the Israel Bond Organization on the 25th anniversary of its founding by the late Premier David Ben Gurion. He noted that the anniversary also marks the attainment of the $3 billion mark in Israel Bond sales since their inception and the beginning of the campaign to sell the fourth billion in Israel Bonds.

ADVANCE SALES TOTAL $127,630,000

Sam Rothberg, general chairman of the Bond Organization announced that advance sales in the 1975 campaign already total $127,630,000 in cash and commitments to help finance Israel’s economic development. Noting that Israelis are the most heavily taxed people in the world and are now carrying the heaviest defense burden in their history, Rothberg called on Jewish communities in the U.S. and Canada to provide a major share of the new Israel Development Budget which amounts to $1.70 billion.

BOND PURCHASES DETAILED

Michael Arnon, president and chief executive officer of Israel Bond Organization praised the cooperation of business, labor and the professional community in the Israel Bond program. He reported that to date 741 banks have purchased 5-1/2 percent institutional bonds totalling $224,892,400. He said that other institutions that have bought Israel Bonds include 5,729 pension funds holding bonds in the amount of $91,242,850; 365 insurance companies with $20,469,450 in Israel Bonds; 1272 trade unions which purchased bonds in the amount of $61,190,100; and another $215,522,400 in bonds purchased by 3,940 communal and other institutions.

The Bond Organization paid tribute to Jacob M. Arvey, the veteran political leader who is serving as honorary chairman of the Israel Bond Organization in Chicago; and Mrs. Jan Peerce, of New York national chairman of the women’s division of the Bond Organization. They were cited for their leadership in behalf of Israel.

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