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Dayan: U.S. Admits Israel is Within Its Rights in Attacking Terrorist Bases in South Lebanon

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Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan said last night that the United States admits Israel is “fully within” its “rights” in attacking terrorist bases in south Lebanon. But, he told Likud Knesset members, the Americans object when civilians are injured and when U.S. made weapons are used in the operations.

Dayan said he saw little hope for a solution to the problem of Lebanon in the foreseeable future. He said the situation was one of utter chaos and confusion with no government to speak of in the country and not even the rudiments of an army.

In addition, soldiers from European countries who serve with the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) return home with anti–Israel feelings, the Foreign Minister said. This is making it harder for Israel to win understanding in those countries.

BASIS FOR U.S.-ISRAEL DIFFERENCES

Dayan said it is no secret any longer that there is a basic difference between the U.S. and Israel caused by the desire of the U.S. to bring the Palestinians into the autonomy talks. “We are, of course, at odds on how we interpret the very concept of autonomy,” he said. “We do not envisage autonomy in quite the same way as the Americans and Egyptians do, and there is even the problem with the use of the term ‘Palestinian’.”

Dayan said the U.S. no longer denies that it is willing to accept a new United Nations Security Council resolution that would be more attractive to the Palestinians than Resolution 242.

At the Cabinet meeting last Sunday, Dayan reportedly said that President Carter promised Israeli Ambassador Ephraim Evron at their meeting last week that the U.S. would veto a Kuwaiti-sponsored resolution in the Security Council calling for Palestinian self-determination and an independent state. Dayan believes the U.S. would support the resolution if the demand for a Palestinian state, which Carter says he opposes, is dropped.

The Foreign Minister said that another problem Israel has with the U.S. is the question of Jewish settlements on the West Bank. Noting that he did not question the right to establish the settlements, Dayan explained that the Americans argue that Israel says it wants negotiations on autonomy while at the same time it seeks to establish a fait accompli, a new situation independent of the talks by establishing settlements. Dayan told the Likud MKs that they have to understand this situation.

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