Dayan Rapped for Publicly Describing Meeting with Hussein
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Dayan Rapped for Publicly Describing Meeting with Hussein

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Former Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan was sharply criticized today for making public impressions of King Hussein of Jordan which could foreclose the possibility of future secret contacts with him or other Arab leaders as a prelude to peace negotiations.

Dayan’s view that the Jordanian ruler will never make peace with Israel on the basis of territorial compromise on the West Bank, as advocated by the Labor Party, is contained in his new book, “Shall We Eternally Face Swords?”

The memoires will be published here shortly and will be serialized in an Israeli newspaper beginning this weekend. Extracts, read over national television last night, described Dayan’s last secret meeting with Hussein in London in 1977.

The former Israeli minister claimed Hussein was a “changed” man, introverted and replying to questions with monosyllabic “yes” or “no.” This led Dayan to conclude that an Israeli-Jordanian settlement based on partition of the West Bank would have to be “forced” on Hussein.

Former Foreign Minister Abba Eban responded immediately after the TV reading. He observed that the most effective way to prevent secret contacts such as Dayan himself had with Hussein was by talking or writing about them.

Much of Dayan’s book is concerned with the author’s role in the Camp David meetings in September, 1978. He praised Premier Menachem Begin for showing “flexibility” but criticized him at the same time for believing excessively in his own intellectual capacity and his ability to run Israel’s foreign affairs without help. According to Dayan, Begin was relieved when he resigned as Foreign Minister in October, 1979 over fundamental policy differences.


Dayan’s book also charges that the quarters assigned to the Israeli leaders at Camp David during the 17 days of deliberations were “bugged” by the Americans. He claims that President Carter inadvertently revealed this when he remarked to Dayan that the Israelis said one thing to the American negotiators but spoke differently in private conversations among themselves.

Dayan also describes his three meetings with Moroccan and Egyptian officials in Morocco in 1977 which led to President Anwar Sadat’s historic visit to Jerusalem in November of that year. He said that the then Egyptian Prime Minister, Hassan Tohami, revealed to him that a senior Israeli army officer had been an Egyptian spy during the 1967 Six-Day War when Dayan was Chief of Staff.

In his book, Dayan said it was his intention to retire from political life when he completes his current Knesset term. Lately, however, he has spoken of organizing a new political party under his leadership to run in the June 30 elections. He also said he has not excluded entirely the possibility of rejoining the Labor Party. That “feeler” which surfaced last week got an icey reception in Labor Party circles.

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