NEW YORK (Jan. 24)
Aryeh Naor, secretary of the Israeli Cabinet, stressed today that for its own security Israel must continue to maintain some type of control of the West Bank. He also rejected the impression said to be held by many American Jews that Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Carter’s National Security Advisor, is an “enemy” of Israel. “Brzezinski is not responsible for Israel, he is responsible for American national interests as he sees it,” Naor pointed out.
His comments came at a press conference sponsored by the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations at which Naor an nounced that Premier Menachem Begin will come to the United States April 30-May 7 to take part in the American celebration of Israel’s 30th anniversary. The Premier will also be guest of honor at the American Zionist Youth Foundation “Salute to Israel Parade” on fifth Avenue May 7.
Naor, who is coordinating the Israeli government’s 30th anniversary plans in Israel, said he has been in New York and Washington for a week to discuss plans for the celebration with the Presidents Conference, which is coordinating the U.S. programs for the 30th anniversary. Mrs. Charlotte Jacobson, chairman of the American Section of the World Zionist Organization has been named chairman of the Israel Thirtieth Anniversary Coordinating Committee.
Naor, who leaves for Israel tonight, said one of his main tasks here was to urge American Jewish veterans to participate in a parade of Jewish veterans through Jerusalem May II that will be the highlight of Israel’s Independence Day celebration.
He noted that the parade will include veterans from all of Israel’s wars and Jews from all over the world who fought for Israel or for their countries in the two World Wars, including partisan and underground fighters. He said this will show the real meaning of the Jewish struggle for life” and demonstrate “our participation and our share in the whole democratic struggle.”
BEGIN’S VISIT COULD BE AN OFFICIAL ONE
Begin’s visit so far is as the guest of the Jewish community but it could be an official visit if President Carter invited him to meet with him in Washington, it was reported by Yehuda Hellman, executive director of the Presidents Conference. Hellman said Begin will participate in a program at Washington’s Kennedy Center, whose chairman is Vice President Walter Mondale. Hellman said that just before the parade May 7 Begin will meet with Jewish community leaders from every state in the U.S. and from every community and organization that wishes to be represented.
Zev Shanken, editor of Response magazine, who the Presidents Conference has named its staff coordinator for the anniversary celebration, said the 30th anniversary will really be a 10-month affair starting March 15 when Abba Eban will broadcast from the original headquarters of the WZO in New York on the events leading to Israel’s birth.
ROLE OF BRZEZINSKI EXPLAINED
When the questioning turned to political matters, Naor said that the Israeli army must be able to control the West Bank “in one way or another” to prevent the area from becoming under control of the Palestine Liberation Organization. He took from his attache case a small map of Israel, which he said he always carries, and demonstrated that if Israel was to withdraw from the West Bank “PLO rockets can hit every city in Israel. I am not talking about missiles, just rockets.”
Naor said a misunderstanding about Brzezinski may have developed because of his Foreign Affairs article which accepted the Brookings Institution recommendation that the PLO should be included in negotiations. This became the original policy of the Carter Administration, Naor said. But, he noted that Carter, Brzezinski and Secretary of State Cyrus Vance now accept the Israeli view and have concluded that a “separate Palestinian state is not good for the United States” as well as Israel.
The Cabinet secretary said he was in Washington last Wednesday when Egyptian President Anwar Sadat suspended the political committee meeting in Jerusalem. But he said he talked to Jerusalem that day and was told an agreement was near. This leads him to believe, he stated, that Sadat had planned from the beginning to break off the talks.
Hellman, who had accompanied Rabbi Alexander Schindler, Presidents Conference chairman, in his talks with Sadat in Aswan earlier this month, said he had the impression from Sadat that before things got better they must first get worse.
However, Naor said he was neither an optimist nor a pessimist but a “realist.” Peace in the Middle East may not come quickly, he said. He pointed out that it took eight years for France to approve Britain’s entry into the Common Market even though there had not been a war between those two countries since 1815.
The 38-year-old Tel Aviv-born Naor said his visit to the U.S. was his first outside Israel. He said he was impressed by the sights he saw in Washington and New York. Naor said that yesterday he was on the 107th floor observation deck of the World Trade Center here and when he looked out on the scene of New York City, he thought, “What mankind can do instead of killing each other.”