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August 19, 1977 - Image 18

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1977-08-19

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

18 Friday, August 19, 1977

MAGICIAN

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

President Wooing Public Support for U.S •Stance

WASHINGTON (JTA)—
President Carter has appar-
ently embarked on a face-
to-face dialogue with the
• American people to win pop-
ular support and bi-partisan

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political backing in Con-
gress for his course of ac-
tion in the Middle East. In
rejecting the advice of Con-
gressional leaders in his
own party as well as Re-
publicans, the President
also appeared to be going
back on a previous pledge
that his Administration
would eschew public re-
marks on the political proc-
ess.
Following Secretary of
State Cyrus Vance's report
to the President Sunday on
his Middle East trip, a
White House statement said
the President and Vance
"remained determined to
do all that is possible" to
bring peace in the Middle
East and that "with the ap-
proval of all concerned, the
U.S. will use its influence,
offer its advice and work to
bring the parties into fruit-
ful negotiations."
The statement said that
both Vance and Carter will
meet the foreign ministers
of Israel and the Arab
states next month and will
also "stay in close touch
with the Soviet Union," the
co-chairman along with the
U.S. of the Geneva confer-
ence.
-The announcement that
Carter would also meet
with foreign ministers in-
dicated the President's per-
sonal involvement in the
proceedings to assure some
peace progress will be
made. The announcement
of his involvement in the
foreign ministers' talks is a
new element in the pro-
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talks were due to be held
between Vance and each of
the foreign ministers sepa-
rately.
Carter made clear his in-
tention to campaign for pub-
lic suppport in an interview
with ABC-TV reporters in
Plains on Aug. 9 which was
broadcast Sunday night. On
Aug. 9, the Vance mission
was already seen as a fail-
ure and the President and
Vance both publicly sought
to induce the PLO to join a
Geneva conference by
agreeing to accept United
Naitons Security Council
Resolution 242. Previously,
the U.S. had demanded that
the PLO alter its charter
calling for the destruction
of Israel. But this proviso
was dropped.
In the ABC interview, the
text of which was released
by the White House, Carter
said, "We are going to con-
tinue to try in a very deter-
mined and tenacious way"
to achieve a Middle East
settlement "and I am going
to continue to go public
with the American posi-
tion."
The President's com-
ments were made as he de-
fended his Administration's
policy of letting the Ame-
ricna people "know the
facts" on foreign policy
issues, including the Middle
East. "It is best for the
American people to know
why we have not had a
Middle Eastern settlement
in 30 years or maybe 2,000
years,— Carter said. He
said the American public
should not only know the
American position, but un-
derstand the differences be-
tween the various sides in
'the Middle East dispute.
Harry Reasoner, one of
the interviewers, pointed
out that "a number of Is-
raeli leaders in private say
that you have made drastic
changes in America's atti-
tude toward Israel and that
they regard you with consid-
erable trepidation." He
asked the President if there
is "justification" for this
view.
"Yes, I am aware of that
feeling and also many other
feelings," Carter replied.
"There's no single attitude
among all Jews in the
world or all Israeli citizens.
"To the extent that Is-
raeli leaders genuinely
want a peace settlement I
think that they have to
agree that there will be an
acceptance of genuine
peace on the part of the
Arabs, an adjustment of
boundaries in the Middle
East which are secure for
the Israelis and also satisfy
the minimum requirements
of the Arab neighbors and
the United Nations resolu-
tions and some solution to
the question of the
enormous number of Pales-
tinian refugees who have
been forced out of their
homes and who want to
have some fair treatment.
"I think world opinion is
very powerful on disputing
nations when there is a con-
sensus on what ought to be
done," the President said in
another passage.
"Quite often for domestic
political consumption there
is an adamance, very dis-
putive and antagonistic atti-
tude taken on the part of
some leaders. But we are

willing to accept this con-
sequence." The President
said "We face some tough
decisions in the future that
is going to require bi-parti-
san support," including
"Middle East" questions.
Some analysts believe
that the Vance trip made
the U.S. position clear: Is-
rael must find a way to ac-
cept PLO participation at
Geneva or find itself facing
U.S. recognition of the
PLO.
The analysts believe the
U.S. succeeded in forcing Is-
rael into the position of
being the scapegoat for the
possible failure of the Gen-
eva talks to resume. The
U.S. maneuvers on the PLO
issue during the Vance trip
are seen as added pressure
on Israel.
Meanwhile, former Is-
raeli Foreign Minister Abba
Eban and George Ball, un-
dersecretary of state in the
Kennedy and Johson Admin-
istrations, disagreed
Tuesday on whether Ameri-
can pressure is needed to
bring about a Middle East
settlement.
Appearing on the Public
Broadcasting System's Mac-
Neil/Lehrer Report, Ball,
repeating the argument he
made in a recent foreign af-
fairs article, said the
United States has a "respon-
sibility" to look after its
own interest and its prin-
ciples. He said a settlement
can be achieved in the
Mideast only if the U.S.
puts pressure on both Israel
and the Arab nations.
Eban replied that if the
US were to try to force Is-
rael to go against its con-
victions it would result only
in the Jewish state taking a
more stiff attitude, since in
the end it is Israeli blood
that would be shed if things
went wrong.
Sen.
Washington,
In
Frank Church of Idaho, the
second ranking Democrat
on the Senate Foreign Rela-
tions Committee, agreed
with President Carter that
the Palestine Liberation Or-
ganization should be a
party in a Geneva confer-
ence when it recognizes Is-
rael's "right to exist" but
he said a U.S. threat to re-
duce aid to Israel would
have "a disastrous result."
Church, appearing Sun-
day on ABC-TV "Issues and
Answers," following his trip
to Cuba where he sought to
mend Cuban-American rela-
tions, also criticized the Car-
ter Administration for its
public pronouncements on
the Middle East and urged
it to cease "public state-
ments" and act "privately"
to influence the course of
Middle East events.
In Cincinnati, Rabbi Jo-
seph P. Stemstein, presi-
dent of the Zionist Organiza-
tion of America, last week
accused the State Depart-
ment of planning to back
down on American corn-
mitments not to deal with
the Palestine Liberation Or-
ganization until it recog-
nizes Israel's right to exist.
Sternstein, addressing a
meeting honoring Dr. Al-
fred Gottschalk, president
of the Hebrew Union Col-
lege-Jewish Institute of Reli-
gion (HUC-JIR), charged
that the PLO "has made it
clear that even if they ac-
cept UN Security Council

Resolution 242, it will not
mean recognition of the
state of Israel."
Meanwhile, in Jeruslaem,
Rabbi Alexander M. Schind-
ler, chairman of the Confer-
ence of Presidents of Major
American Jewish Organiza-
tions, was reported Sunday
to have pledged to Premier
Menahem Begin that organ-
ized Jewry in the United
States would mobilize a pub-
lic fight against the Carter
Administration's readiness
to deal with the Palestine
Liberation Organization if
the PLO agrees to accept
United Nations Security
Council Resolution 242.
Haaretz said Sunday that
this was the main outcome
of a meeting last weekend —
between Begin and Schind-
ler, who had been asked to
Israel on short notice
following President Carter's
statements on the PLO last
week and Secretary of
State Cyrus Vance's visit to
the area.
Meanwhile, the Knesset
was expected to be called
back from its summer
recess this week following a
demand by the opposition
Labor Alignment to discuss
what it called the "failure
of the government's foreign
policy." Labor is expected
to argue that Begin should
have expressed Israel's will-
ingness to make territorial
compromises, during
Vance's two-day visit here
last week, because the fail-
ure to do so has put Israel
in a position of political iso-
lation and jeopardized the
reconvening of the Geneva
conference this year.
In a related development,
Premier Begin and former
Foreign Minister Yigal
Allon clashed Monday in a
short, but lively, debate
over what type of con-
sensus there is in Israel on
the Palestinian question.
Begin said the opposition
Labor Alignment agreed
with the government that Is-
rael should not negotiate
with a Palestine state on
the West Bank, so there
was no need for the special
Knesset session which the
alignment had requested.

Allon agreed there was a
consensus on this but said
the government refused to
consider any positive solu-
tion to the problem, such as
in the context of Jordan,
and thus could not claim to
represent a national con-
sensus.
In Tel —Aviv, Premier
Begin declared Sunday
night that the rejection by
Syrian President Hafez
Assad of the idea of "prox-
imity" talks in New York
between Israeli, Arab and
American foreign ministers
belies the Arabs' reported
willingness to sign peack
treaties with Israel. The -
idea was proposed in Alex-
andria two weeks ago to
Secretary of State Cyrus
Vance by Egyptian Presi-
dent Anwar Sadat but was
later withdrawn by Sadat
when Assad flatly rejected
it.

We should be grateful for
the presence of rogues
among the poor; for if not
for them, we would sin
each time we ignored an ap-,
peal for alms.
--Talmud

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