JERUSALEM (Jul. 31)
Former U.S. Undersecretary of State Joseph Sisco does not think Jordan will join the peace process in the near future. Sisco is in Israel after a trip to Syria and Jordan.
Speaking to reporters after a lecture he gave at the Van Leer Institute in Jerusalem, Sisco said Jordan continued to be interested in peace in the area, but it was unlikely that it would join the peace talks in the foreseeable future. He said the Syrians were preoccupied with their own internal troubles, but they, too, did not preclude a peace settlement in the long range.
In his lecture, Sisco warned Israel that American interests were not always synonymous with those of Israel. “Regardless of the difficulties, the security of Israel continues to be inextricably linked with the U.S. As long as we are together we can protect our overall mutual interests,” he said.
But, added Sisco, this did not mean that American and Israeli interests were synonymous. “You are a regional power. We are a global power,” he said “We have other interests. Our interests do go beyond any one country in the area, regardless of the special relationship that has existed, and hopefully will continue to exist in the future.”
U.S. STRATEGIC DEPLOYMENT IN THE AREA
Sisco said that in the 1980s the U.S. will have completed a new strategic deployment in the region to deter any possible Soviet offensive moves. He told his audience:
“The military buildup that you see today in the Persian Gulf on the part of the U.S…. is not going to be a temporary six months one shot operation. It is not going to be American turning the other cheek once and if most of the (American) hostages (in Teheran) are released. But I think that you can expect over the next five years a concerted systematic effort on the part of American to make that military capacity a permanent feature. The use of facilities in the area, the propositioning of military equipment in the area, is not only as a signal to the USSR that any next move will not be cost free, but as a signal to our friends, to Israel and the moderate Arabs that this is a reflection that American considers this area vital to its own interests, and that it is essential to us to have a credible deterrent, a credible option in this particular area.”