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Tekoah Warns West Not to Compete with Soviets for Nasser’s Favor

March 11, 1968
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Ambassador Yosef Tekoah, Israel’s permanent representative to the United Nations, charged here tonight that the Western nations were trying to compete with the Soviet Union for the favor of Egypt’s President Nasser and warned that such a policy would not work. The Israel envoy spoke at a special aliyah (immigration) conference of the Zionist Organization of America, attended by 400 persons.

Ambassador Tekoah said that the decision adopted by the Arab heads of state at Khartoum last summer to the effect that there must be no peace with Israel still dominated Arab policy and that recent statements by Nasser and other Egyptian Government spokesmen did not auger well for a peaceful settlement. He rejected as ‘unfounded and meaningless” reports in the last few days from Cairo and other sources suggesting that Egypt had accepted the Security Council’s Nov. 22, 1967 resolution. “What Egypt has accepted is her own interpretation of the resolution,” he said, “an interpretation that has been rejected by the Security Council itself.”

Ambassador Tekoah said that the Soviet Union, by the very nature of its policy, has always proved itself capable of outbidding its competitors in the Middle East. “Therefore Western competition in seeking Nasser’s favors and catering to his whims has been an utter failure.” The West, he said, should try to contain the Soviets in the Middle East, not compete with them.

Jacques Torczyner, ZOA president, said that the large attendance at the aliyah conference indicated “a marked increase in the desire of many American Jews to settle in Israel and to contribute to the pioneering growth of Israel.”

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