NEW YORK (Dec. 20)
Israel Ambassador Ephraim Evron said here that the Palestine Liberation Organization was now in decline as a result of the terrorist attack against the American Embassy in Teheran and that there was increasing recognition among policy-planners in Washington of Israel’s role as America’s only stable and reliable ally in on increasingly hostile Middle East.
In a briefing to the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations on Monday, Evron said the only “bright, spot” in the Middle East today was the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty and the progress toward normal relations being made by the two countries and their leader.
“At a time when OPEC is raising oil prices still another time and Moslem fanatics are twisting the tail of the American tiger to see if it is made of paper, Israel’s role as a stalwart ally whose people will never turn on America is I believe, winning increasing official recognition, ” Evron said.
Noting that his talk marked the anniversary of his appointment as Israel’s envoy to Washington, Evron said the tensions and confrontations that had earlier marked U.S. -Israel relations were now “a thing of the past” and that the two countries had achieved a “modus vivendi” in which the natural and inevitable differences between them could be approached constructively and calmly.
He warned, however, that during the past year Soviet Russia had made “significant progress” in strengthening its foothold in the Arab world and that the out come of the consent U.S.-Iranian crisis would have a “direct effect” on the chances of an Arab-Israel peace.
WARNS AGAINST U.S. ARMS SALE TO SAUDI ARABIA
Theodore Mann, chairman of the Presidents Conference, reported on his most recent trip to Israel, where he met and spent “long hours” with Premier Menachem Begin and other government leaders. On the proposed sale of advanced American missiles and weapons systems to Saudi Arabia, Mann warned that the United States would be repeating “the same mistake it made when it dumped huge amounts of arms on Iran.”
” If Saudi Arabia goes under, “he said, “it will be the result of internal subversion — not external attack, just as in Iran. ” He said the weaponry would “also threaten the sensitive Arab-Israeli balance of arms, under which the Arabs have more weapons but Israel has qualitative superiority.” Mann added that Egypt’s requests for U.S. arms are also “profoundly” disturbing. “Egypt needs economic help from our country, which we strongly support, but not military hardware, “he said. He said constituent organizations of the Presidents Conference will begin contacting their Congressmen and the Administration on these issues.