Nasser is great, Israel is the aggressor, Arabs want peace, “Zionists” control the media, the UN is a arbiter of all that is moral.
Nothing has changed in the an
AN AMERICAN expert on Arab- Israeli affairs has come out with the statement that Israel is directly responsible for the explosive tensions of the Middle East. His views, given at a press conference, were printed in the Los Angeles Times in mid-April. They were promptly challenged by spokesmen for Israel, as was to be expected.
Elmo H. Hutchison is Middle East director of American Friends of the Middle East. He also is a former member of the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization in Palestine and a former chairman of the Israel Jordan Mixed Armistice Commission, so he speaks with a measure of authority.
His most interesting observation was that alleviation of the tension “is within easy access if only Israel wants it.”
Arab neighbors are willing to recognize the Jewish state, providing it is a contained state “more in line with the plan originally put forward by the United Nations,” he told reporters. Hutchison charged that Americans have a very distorted picture of the Middle East.
This is because, he said, they are up against “the world’s greatest propaganda machine—the Zionists.” He said that only the Arabs have given in on any of the pressing problems that have arisen in that heated arena. To elucidate his position he made these points:
Some 300,000 Arabs whose people had lived for centuries in Palestine were uprooted and rendered destitute to establish Israel. The Jews of Palestine, he said, constituted 33 per cent of the population and owned only seven per cent of the land before their new state suddenly came into being and they came into possession of 55 per cent of the land.
Israel rejected all of the UN resolutions governing the establishment of its state save that which was favorable to its ambitions. Her present borders violate the UN plan.
Egypt’s President Nasser, Hutchison believed, is not the “villain portrayed in this country.” He is the child, not the parent, of Arab nationalism. The Arabs, he thought, want only to attain their just place in the sun, and they are going to reach it, one way or another. The Arabs, he said, do not tend toward Communism and Russian overtures to those countries “are making little progress.”
He quoted the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem that “the Communists are running after the Arabs. The Arabs are running after the United States. And the United States is being led blindfolded by the Zionists.”
Hutchison said that the Eisenhower administration’s policies have been effective, in so far as they try to check Communist penetration into the Middle East. But this effort, he thought, should be coupled with stronger attempts to solve the Palestine refugee problem and the rectification of the territorial inequities forced on Arab states.
He termed Israel, “on the basis of UN records,” an expansionist, aggressive and militarist power with “a military machine second to none in the world per capita.” American policy makers might well keep this in mind, he said.
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