WASHINGTON (Sep. 5)
Secretary of State Cyrus Vance today absolved the American Jewish community of any connection with the resignation of Andrew Young as Ambassador to the United Nations.
At his first press conference since Young’s resignation last month following his meeting with the Palestine Liberation Organization observer at the UN, Vance was asked two questions about the Ambassador’s departure from government service. The first was why Young was “singled out” when the U.S. Ambassador to Austria Milton Wolf also met with PLO representatives and was not rebuked as Young was by Vance, and couldn’t Young’s meeting be justified on the ground that he was then President of the Security Council.
Vance, without explaining that Young was not Council President when he held his meeting in New York July 26, replied that the envoy’s resignation “has been gone length and had been “reviewed time and again by the spokesman” for the State Department. He then added that he also stands “fully behind” his own statement at the time of Young’s resignation in which he did not express regret over Young’s decision and in which he praised the Ambassador’s service.
“Andy made a great contribution to the United States and its foreign policy,” Vance said today. “It would not do any good, it would be fruitless and indeed unwise to thrash all of this ground again.”
The Secretary of State was also asked by another reporter whether American Jews or Israel were behind Young’s resignation or whether his resignation was brought on by his own action in meeting with the PLO observer. “It was not brought about by the Jewish community,” Vance replied. “I want to make it very clear. I think I have spoken to the rest of the question.” Vance refrained from making any comment about whether he thought Israel was involved in Young’s resignation.
Young, himself, at the time he resigned indicated that neither Israel nor the Jewish community had anything to do with his decision to resign but “because I don’t want the Carter Administration or Secretary Vance to have to take the blame for the decisions that I felt that I had to make — decisions which I still feel were very much in the interest of this nation.”