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Dayan; Let U.S. Operate Sinai Bases

Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan has suggested to the Cabinet that Israel suggest to Egypt that the U.S. Air Force operate the three air bases that Israel is to vacate in Sinai under the peace treaty. Dayan said the Egyptians might consider, as he does, that radical strategy changes in the area since the peace was signed, notably the fall of the Shah in Iran, might justify the U.S. using the bases, with the Egyptian and Israeli air forces also using them. Ministers reacted with interest to Dayan’s idea, though many felt it would not be accepted by the Egyptians. There was much bitterness, however, when it turned out that the idea was leaked from the Cabinet chamber hours after yesterday’s weekly meeting ended. Cabinet ministers said they felt the leak might have killed the idea before it could even be tested.

Dayan attended his first Cabinet session yesterday after his operation three weeks ago for the removal of a tumor from his intestine. He looked well but was still hoarse from damage sustained to his vocal chords during the operation. He plans to make an official visit to Holland the last week in July.

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