WASHINGTON (Jun. 16)
Will Arab strategists who have ordered a boycott of the Free and Accepted Order of Masons and urge the Arab nations to close Masonic lodges within their domains now refuse to handle American greenbacks bearing the likeness of George Washington and Andrew Jackson who were members of the Masonic fraternity?
The Arab boycott conference on June 9 banned the Masons because some of them reportedly plan to hold a conference in Israel this year. Masons here said they know of no specific Masonic conference but Masonic groups generally visit Israel on tours. Mohammed Mahgoub, Commissioner General of the Arab Boycott Office, said the Masons have refused to hold their conference outside of Israel. “This movement (Masons) worked for Israel and sponsors the Zionist movement under the cover of an international social movement,” he said, claiming that the conference would draw thousands of visitors to Israel and help its economy. Masons here noted the peculiar linkage between the anti-Masonic ban coming from the Arab meeting in Alexandria, Egypt and the fact that Alexandria, Virginia is the site of the National Masonic Shrine to George Washington, a leading Mason in his day. Fifteen American Presidents have been Masons, including Jackson, both Roosevelts, James Monroe, Lyndon B. Johnson and Harry Truman, who was Grand Master of Missouri prior to going to the White House. Gerald Ford is a Mason but not President Carter, Masons here said.
The Masonic fraternity, which originated in Britain and has lodges in many nations, has numerous Jews in its membership. Jews have been long active particularly in the Shriners, a charitable organization that is part of the fraternity.