Defense Minister Moshe Dayan said today that Syrian disengagement terms which U.S. Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger is expected to bring from Damascus will be accepted by Israel only if they are acceptable and win the approval of a majority of the Knesset. Otherwise there will be no agreement. Dayan said.
The Defense Minister spoke for the care-taker government in reply to a Likud motion in the Knesset today for a discussion of the situation on the Syrian front and the government’s stand on disengagement. Dayan stressed that at the moment there are no pressures from the U.S. and that Israel had readily agreed to Kissinger’s suggestion that he act as an intermediary. “The agreement is an Israeli matter, not an American matter and we shall examine Syrian proposals with an open mind,” Dayan said. “If we like them we shall accept them and if not, we shall reject them,” he added.
Dayan observed that Israel has no “magic formula” to end the war of attrition now being waged by Syria. He said Israel had three alternatives: to intensify the fighting in order to hit the Syrians harder; to advance further into Syria in an effort to destroy the Syrian army and its equipment; or to try to end the situation in the north “under conditions agreed to by the Knesset and the Cabinet.” Dayan said he would not recommend the first two solutions because any escalation of the war would not be one-sided and even a successful Israeli operation into Syria would leave unanswered the question, “What next?”
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