Two Congressmen Hit State Dept. for Approving Nasser Rocket Deal
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Two Congressmen Hit State Dept. for Approving Nasser Rocket Deal

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Two New York Congressmen, Rep. William Fitts Ryan and Rep. Leonard Farbstein, took sharp issue with the State Department today for granting export licenses permitting the shipment of rockets to the United Arab Republic. Both are Democrats. Mr. Farbstein is a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Mr. Ryan told the House of Representatives that he was opposed to the United States shipment of rockets to the UAR because such rockets “will be used in connection with the July 23 celebration of Nasser’s rise to power for propaganda purposes.” He said he had protested to Secretary of State Dean Rusk, and urged, immediate suspension of the export licenses. In his view, the State Department should cancel arrangements benefiting Nasser because “the U. S. should not aid the UAR in propaganda or military efforts.”

Representative Ryan said the UAR had no appropriate scientific research program for use of the rockets but “it is possible that, by analyzing the components and fuel of these rockets, the UAR could obtain military information.”

Representative Farbstein said that the United States decision to equip the Nasser regime with rockets was a “tragic error.” He declared that “the rockets would backfire in our face” because Nasser would exploit them for anti-Western propaganda purposes in the Near East and Africa.

He saw no reason why the State Department should take upon itself responsibility for “restoring Nasser’s prestige” following Israel’s “rocket triumph for peaceful purposes, typical of Jewish devotion to science and learning.”

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