Washington (Jun. 2)
The Union of Councils on Soviet Jews (UCSJ) called on the Senate yesterday to reject the nomination of Ernest LeFever as Assistant Secretary of State for Humanitarian Affairs.
Robert Gordon, of Boston, president of the UCSJ said that to Soviet Jews and the United States, human rights is a moral obligation and practical matter, not something to be used as a “stick for attacking the Soviet Government.”
Paul Meek, Washington representative of the UCSJ said that his organization supported the use of public statements and quiet diplomacy in helping Soviet Jewry. But he said that LeFever seemed to want to use quiet diplomacy on what he calls “authoritarian” regimes and public statements to attack adversaries of the United States. He said LeFever does not seem to support human rights but only wants to use it as a “tool” to attack adversaries of the U.S.
Several other Jewish organizations have attacked the LeFever nomination. On NBC TV’s “Meet the Press” Sunday Sen. Paul Tsongas (D. Mass.) said that II of the 17 members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee were ready to vote against the LeFever nomination. Tsongas, a member of the committee, said that Secretary of State Alexander Haig was “not beating down any doors of the Senate” in support of LeFever. But at the Sen-
ate today, a Department spokesman, David Passage said LeFever “retains the confidence of the Administration” and Haig continues to support his nomination.