Friday, July 01, 2005


This is a further article in my series (following on from the work on the Eisenhower period by Joseph Alexander Norland of Israpundit) to try to show to Irish readers the support which the United States governments have given to the PLO...Felix Quigley

Will the Real Secretary of State Please Stand Up? by Israel Zwick
Thursday, June 30, 2005

(From The Raphi website printed with his kind permission)

When reported the meeting between President Bush and Mahmoud Abbas on May 26, 2005, they titled the article, “Palestinians Leave D.C. Happy.”

Authors Note: The following article was inspired by the website “Is the US an Ally of Israel?”.
(Here I think the author is referring to the article. The website in question is Emperors New Clothes which can be found on this url

The website was written by Francisco Gil-White, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and Deputy Editor at Emperor’s Clothes. Though not Jewish himself, Professor Gil-White has become a staunch advocate of Jewish rights. He is currently working on a book about anti-Semitism and describes himself as “an anthropologist of the wonderful Jews.”

For weeks, Prof. Gil-White had been urging me to review his documents. I procrastinated because of their length and complexity. Finally, I printed out all 150 pages and reviewed them. When I expressed some skepticism about the conclusions, Prof. Gil-White challenged me to conduct my own independent research. I accepted his challenge and reviewed over a hundred documents obtained from proprietary databases provided by EBSCO and ProQuest. To my surprise and dismay, I came to the same conclusion that he did. This article, dealing with the role of James A. Baker III, is only a brief excerpt from my research. If I get positive feedback, I would be willing to continue this as a series of several installments. As with my previous articles, the material presented here is not intended to be exhaustive or conclusive. It is intended to stimulate thought, discussion, and action. For those who would like to read more, please go here.

When reported the meeting between President Bush and Mahmoud Abbas on May 26, 2005, they titled the article, “Palestinians Leave D.C. Happy.” The Palestinians had good reason to be happy. Palestinian Foreign Minister Nasser Al-Kidwa commented afterwards, “It was a success for the Palestinian side…I don’t think we’ve heard such a clear and comprehensive U.S. position in the past.” What Al-Kidwa was referring to was Bush’s statement, “Any final status agreement must be reached between the two parties, and changes to the 1949 Armistice lines must be mutually agreed to. A viable two-state solution must ensure contiguity of the West Bank, and a state of scattered territories will not work. There must also be meaningful linkages between the West Bank and Gaza…All parties have a responsibility to make this hopeful moment in the region a new and peaceful beginning.”

When Condoleeza Rice held a press conference with Mahmoud Abbas on June 18, 2005, she spoke about a “vision that recognizes the right of the Palestinians to live in peace and security, and of Israelis to live in peace and security.” In an article in the Jerusalem Post on June 24, 2005, Caroline Glick observed that the Bush-Rice “visions” of a Palestinian state, “has no relation whatsoever to the realities on the ground. The reality on the ground is that Palestinian society is unified by a dedication to the destruction of Israel, not the establishment of a Palestinian state.”
Despite the inherent dangers, proponents of the disengagement-roadmap plan are still citing its advantages. Yossi Klein Halevi stated their arguments succinctly in an article in the Spring, 2005 issue of Azure Magazine. According to Halevi, “Reducing the demographic threat to Jewish majority, preempting the threat of an international campaign to isolate and demonize Israel, and establishing consensus borders of defense are goals that require serious debate, not dismissal.” In the May, 2005 issue of Foreign Affairs, David Makovsky was even more optimistic, “A successful withdrawal will shatter old taboos, undermine extremists, embolden moderates, and facilitate further withdrawals. A failed effort, meanwhile, will condemn both Israelis and the Palestinians to many more years of violence and despair.” Makovsky and Dennis Ross continued this reasoning in an article in Financial Times on June 21, 2005. According to them, “Israel’s disengagement is about securing Israel’s future as a Jewish democratic state and not holding it hostage to Palestinian behaviour.” They argue that the disengagement plan will prevent the “demographic time bomb” that would destroy Israel. What Makovky and Ross failed to recognize is that the disengagement-roadmap could actually exacerbate the demographic problem, rather than prevent it. The plan would encourage an influx of Arabs who would want to take advantage of opportunities in the economic development of Gaza. It would encourage an exodus of young Israelis who would not be able to find affordable housing within the confining 1967 borders. Then when there are 5 million Jews and 5 million Arabs living in the 1947 borders of British Palestine, there will be international pressure to unite the three fragments into one binational state.

In her article, “Disengagement or Suicide?” on June 17, 2005, Cinnamon Stillwell argued that “the truth is the much-heralded Disengagement Plan that is supposed to bring peace and harmony to the region is likely to have the opposite effect.” Ironically, on the same day that Stillwell’s article was published, the Jerusalem Post reported that “Scores of unidentified gunmen in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday night went on a rampage inside a medical center run by Jalilah Dahlan, wife of Palestinian Authority Civil Affairs Minister Muhammad Dahlan.” Jalilah Dahlan commented, “This attack reflects the state of anarchy and lawlessness which endangers the lives of people. About 70 gunmen raided the hospital, shooting into the air and destroying everything in their way.” Several days later, in his article, “Nine Questionable Premises of the Disengagement Plan,” David Bedein refuted all of the major arguments presented by the proponents of the plan.

The strong arguments against the Disengagement-Roadmap plan suggest that external factors unfavorable to Israel are fueling and driving this plan. In the popular book “Boomerang,” Israeli journalists Raviv Drucker and Ofer Shalach suggested that Sharon devised the Disengagement Plan to avoid indictment in the Greek Island scandal. Despite the thorough research of the authors, it is difficult to accept that a man like Sharon who devoted the last 60 years of his life to defend Israel, would sacrifice the security of the State to avoid indictment for financial improprieties in his family. Also, there are many other Members of the Knesset and the IDF who are supporting this ill-conceived Disengagement Plan. Does that mean that they are all involved in financial improprieties? Another troubling question is “Why is this plan being implemented so hastily?” After holding these areas for 38 years, is it really necessary to evacuate them in five weeks between Tisha B’Av and Rosh Hashona? What crime did these 9000 settlers commit that they should be expelled the way Rabin expelled 400 Hamas terrorists to Lebanon in 1992? Haven’t they been loyal citizens of the State of Israel? Haven’t they contributed to the security and economy of the State? Haven’t they served with distinction in the Israeli military? If it is really necessary to destroy these communities, couldn’t it be done over a longer period of time so that the residents can be resettled with the honor, dignity, and respect that they deserve?

All of these questions suggest that there are external influences that are fueling and driving this roadmap plan, which are not in the best interests of the State of Israel. To explore this issue, it is first necessary to go back to the time when there were no Jewish communities in the West Bank and Gaza. Between 1948 and 1967, Egypt controlled the Gaza Strip and Jordan controlled the West Bank. President Nasser publicly called for the destruction of the State of Israel and used the Gaza Strip to stage numerous terrorist acts against Israel. Jews weren’t permitted to live in the West Bank and the Jordanians desecrated and destroyed Jewish cemeteries and synagogues in the area. Jewish students in day schools throughout the world were taught about the Western Wall in Jerusalem, the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, and the Tomb of Rachel near Bethlehem. They were also taught that “Today these areas are controlled by Arabs, and Jews are not allowed to go there.” Yet there was no international effort at all to correct this injustice. Jews were not permitted to step foot into ancestral homelands where they lived for thousands of years.

In May, 1967, President Nasser blockaded the Straits of Tiran to continue his military plan to destroy Israel. In June, 1967, Israel staged a preemptive strike against Egypt. Jordan was warned by Prime Minister Levi Eshkol to stay out of the fight. Instead, King Hussein decided to attack Israel. In a difficult battle, costing many Jewish lives, Israel captured Jerusalem and the West Bank. Israelis and Jews around the world were jubilant. They immediately rushed in to see their holy sites. When it soon became obvious that the Arabs were still unwilling to make peace, Jews were eager to reestablish communities in their ancestral lands that existed prior to the 1948 War of Independence.

The reaction of the United States was swift and oppositional. The United States government repeatedly expressed its opposition to any Jewish resettlement in the Jerusalem environs. On July 1, 1969, US Representative Charles Yost told the UN Security Council, “The United States considers that the part of Jerusalem that came under the control of Israel in the June war, like other areas occupied by Israel, is governing the rights and obligations of an occupying Power…the occupier must maintain the occupied area as intact and unaltered as possible, without interfering with the customary life of the area.” Nobody said this when Jordan destroyed Jewish cemeteries and synagogues.

US Ambassador William Scranton told the UN Security Council on March 23, 1976, “Substantial resettlement of the Israeli civilian population in occupied territories, including East Jerusalem is illegal under the [Geneva] convention and cannot be considered to have prejudged the outcome of future negotiations between the parties on the locations of the borders of states by the Middle East.”
On March 21, 1980, Secretary of State Cyrus Vance told the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, “US policy toward the establishment of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories is unequivocal and long been a matter of public record. We consider it to be contrary to international law and an impediment to the successful conclusion of the Middle East process.” Several weeks later, President Carter repeated, “Our position on the settlements is very clear. We do not think that they are legal.”

Relations between the United States and Israel took a turn for the worse during the administration of George H.W. Bush beginning in January 1989. Bush appointed James A. Baker III to be his Secretary of State. Baker served as White House chief of staff and Secretary of the Treasury during the Reagan administration when Bush was Vice President. In March, 1989, prior to Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir’s visit to Washington, Baker said, “Now if you cannot have direct negotiations that are meaningful that don’t involve negotiations with the PLO…we would then have to see negotiations between Israelis and representatives of the PLO.” This suggests that Baker now perceived the terrorist PLO as a valid player in the Arab-Israeli dispute.

Shamir responded to this firmly in a speech in Washington on April 6, 1989: “The Arab inhabitants of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza don’t want us in these areas. We cannot risk the life of our country by leaving. The slogan ‘territories for peace’ is a hoax…If we leave, there will almost certainly be war. But we do not want to run the lives of the inhabitants. We want them to have self-rule. We want them to be able to express their national aspirations through the Palestinian state on the east bank of the Jordan. And above all, we want to end the hostility and bloodshed by negotiating with a leadership they elect to represent themselves, not with a terrorist organization based in Tunisia.”

Baker responded with an address to the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) on May 22, 1989. Baker was careful not to ruffle any feathers in his lengthy policy speech, “Neither the United States nor any other party, inside or outside, can or will dictate an outcome. That is why the United States does not support annexation or permanent Israeli control of the West Bank and Gaza, nor do we support the creation of an independent Palestinian state.” Instead, Baker supported, “self-government for Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza in a manner acceptable to Palestinians, Israel, and Jordan.”

In an article in the New Republic on June 18, 1990, Fred Barnes argued that the Bush Administration’s attitude towards Israel is the biggest impediment to a Middle East peace settlement. According to Barnes, Bush adopted the Carter policies towards Israel instead of the Reagan policies, “Like Carter, Bush thinks the Israelis need to be leaned on to make concessions…Before Israel gets the $400 million loan guarantee, Bush still wants assurances that none of the money will promote expansion of settlement in the West Bank.”

James Baker had a different view about impediments to peace. In testimony to the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on May 22, 1991, Baker said, “I don’t think there is any greater obstacle to peace than settlement activity that continues not only unabated but at an advanced pace.” So according to Baker, Islamic fundamentalism, intolerance, and terrorism were not significant obstacles to peace, but young Jewish families who want to live in their historical homeland were a significant threat to peace.

An editorial in the New Republic on June 17, 1991, titled “The Baker Fallacy,” was highly critical of the Baker statement: “The enlightened orthodoxy in this country that no Jews should be permitted to live among the Palestinian Arabs is a strained conceit. Would the same people be arguing that Palestinian Arabs be similarly banned from living in Israel?…it is absurd to believe that their existence is the linchpin to progress in the region, and that if they were to disappear tomorrow, all problems would be easier to solve…For Mr. Baker, the settlements are a convenient alibi for his failure to produce any Arabs at all for serious negotiations…his vision really asks nothing of the Arab states.”

Baker’s term as Secretary of State ended when Bill Clinton defeated George Bush in 1992. Yet Baker remained involved in Middle East affairs. On December 5, 1996, Baker presented the keynote address at a daylong conference sponsored by the Center for Middle East Peace & Economic Cooperation. According to reporter Shawn Twing, “Baker criticized the Clinton administration for recently abandoning the US government’s long-standing position that Jewish settlements in the occupied territories are ‘obstacles to peace,’ and instead dismissing them as merely “complicating factors.” According to Baker, “It’s a mistake to change the rules if you want to make progress.” The next day, State Department spokesman Nicholas Burns told reporters, “Settlements are a complicating factor, and they’re unhelpful in the Middle East peace negotiations.”

On April 7, 2003, the Toronto Star, reported on an address that Baker gave to the Empire Club of Canada. The Arab American Institute reprinted the article on its website as “Must-Read News.” Baker said, “Land for peace under United Nations Security Council resolutions 242 and 238, therefore, is the only basis upon which the dispute can be settled…Any decision to reopen the roadmap to substantive amendment, for instance, is an open invitation to interminable delay. And there should be no conditions whatever to Israel’s obligation to stop all settlement activity…the United States must press Israel – as a friend, but firmly – to negotiate a secure peace based on the principle of trading land for peace in accordance with UNSC resolution 242.”

The implication here is that if only the State of Israel would relinquish a few thousand square kilometers of its vast holdings to the poor, land starved Arabs, then peace would follow shortly.
Baker’s involvement in Middle East affairs continued in the administration of George W. Bush. Naomi Klein wrote a lengthy article on “The Double Life of James Baker” in the November 1, 2004 issue of Nation. According to the abstract, “The article focuses on the conflicts of interest of former US Secretary of State James Baker, who was sent by President Geroge W. Bush as an envoy to Iraq in 2003…There was widespread concern about whether Baker’s extensive business dealings in the Middle East would compromise that mission…Of particular concern was his relationship with merchant bank and defense contractor the Carlyle Group, where Baker is senior counselor and an equity partner with an estimated $180 million stake…The Carlyle Group does extensive business with the Saudi Royal family, as does Baker’s law firm, Baker Botts.”

Even more disconcerting for the State of Israel is a report released on February 4, 2005 by the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University. The report was titled, “Creating a Roadmap Implementation Process Under United States Leadership.” The report was based on a workshop chaired by Baker Institute Director Edward Djerejian, former US Ambassador to Syria and Israel. He is currently on the Board of Directors of several companies doing business in the Middle East. The 29-page report focuses on the Disengagement Plan and “An International Plan for Palestinian Economic Rehabilitation.” According to the plan, “The strengthening of the PA is therefore understood to be a necessary precondition to the success of the Roadmap, and at the same time is a precondition for the creation of a permissive environment for economic rehabilitation and international support for economic growth…Palestinian economic rehabilitation over a sustained period of time is necessary for the well-being of the Palestinian people, the success of the first phase of the Roadmap, and the Israeli Disengagement Plan.”

Several statements from the report pose a direct threat to the security of the State of Israel. On page 19 it says, “In order to encourage Palestinian trade, the possibility of establishing Palestinian storage and customs facilities in the Israeli harbors of Ashdod and Haifa and at Ben Gurion Airport should be examined.” On page 21 it states that to “make it possible for the Palestinian people to establish a viable state in the West Bank and Gaza, there is a decisive need for a comprehensive Israeli settlement freeze and the eventual evacuation of Israeli settlements behind a negotiated and agreed border…The US should establish a Settlement Monitoring Office to monitor the settlement freeze and outpost removal.”

The implications of the report should be obvious:

1) Jews will be confined to living within the 1967 borders, with perhaps minor adjustments. 2) There will be massive economic rehabilitation of the West Bank and Gaza for the Palestinian people. 3) There will be a large influx of Arabs into the Palestinian areas to take advantage of economic opportunities. 4)With limited opportunities for affordable housing in a congested Israel, young Jewish families will be discouraged from living in Israel. 5)In a short time, there will be 5 million Jews and 5 million Arabs living in the 1947 boundaries of British Palestine. 6)There will be international pressure to unite the three small fragments of land into one binational state of Arabs and Jews. 7)The State of Israel will be dissolved and Jews will live under the domination and mercy of an Arab majority. 8)There will be a mass exodus of Jews to more favorable environments in North America, if they are allowed to emigrate. 9)Eventually, Jews will be only a small minority in the new Arab state. Perhaps they will be given visitation rights to their holy sites.

Sharon’s rush to implement the Disengagement Plan now makes more sense. By sacrificing a few hundred square kilometers in Gaza, he’s hoping he will be able to stall or prevent the implementation of the rest of the Roadmap plan. However, his plan may backfire. On Sunday, June 26, 2005, Palestinian sources confirmed that leaders of Hamas and other Palestinian radical groups now based in Lebanon and Syria are planning to move to the Gaza Strip after Israel evacuates the area. Also, on the same day the Palestinian Authority warned Palestinians to not buy any evacuated land. The PA Interior Ministry said, “These lands belong to the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian people and no one has the right to trade in them.” This raises the question as to whether these lands will actually be used for peaceful purposes. Even after evacuation, the Gaza Strip will continue to be a big thorn in the side of the State of Israel.

Before the 1967 war, there was a popular song by Barry McGuire called the “Eve of Destruction.” Some of those lyrics seem to be appropriate to the current situation:
Don’t you understand what I’m tryin’ to say Can’t you feel the fears I’m feelin’ today? If the button is pushed, there’s no runnin’ away There’ll be no one to save, with the world in a grave Take a look around you boy It’s bound to scare you boy
And you tell me Over and over and over again, my friend Ah, you don’t believe We’re on the eve Of destruction.

***** Israel Zwick, special to, holds advanced degrees in biology and psychology but often writes on topics of Jewish interest. Though he lives in New York, he has children and grandchildren in Israel.

I am very grateful to The Raphi for kindly giving me permission to post this article..Felix Quigley


4. A list of selected world events that occurred during Eisenhower's administration

Reading how obsessively Eisenhower-Dulles tried to micro-manage the Israel-Arab conflict, one might be led to the conclusion that nothing else of significance occurred during the Eisenhower administration. Nothing is further from the truth.

Overall, such mega trends as the Cold War and decolonization of Asia and Africa were in progress. At the top of the agenda were such crucial questions as the future of Germany, Berlin and Austria - still occupied when Eisenhower began his term - the future of NATO, disarmament and detente.

Among the specific events that took place at the time were the death of Stalin and the subsequent changes in Soviet leadership (March 1953); strikes and insurrection in East Germany (June 1953); the end of the Korean War (July 1953); the USSR announcement that she has developed the H-Bomb (August 1953); riots in Trieste (September-November 1953); the cease-fire agreement signed by France and the Vietmin (July 1954); fire exchanges between China and Formosa (September 1954); Germany becoming an independent state and member of NATO, and the USSR establishing the Warsaw Pact (May 1955); the fall of Peron in Argentina (September 1955); attempts to settle the East-West disputes in meetings of the four major powers (Geneva, October 1955); Anti-government uprisings in Hungary and Poland - especially in Poznan (June 1956); Hungarian anti-Soviet revolt (October 1956); official annexation of Kashmir by India, in violation of UN resolutions (January 1957); Sputnik and the space race (October 1957); A Tibetan revolt against the Chinese occupation (March 1959); War between China and India (October 1959); US-France dispute about NATO (December 1959); riots in S Korea against Singman (Syngman) Rhee (April 1960), The crisis of the U2 piloted by Francis Gary Powers (May to August 1960); the Castro subversion in Guatemala and Nicaragua (November 1960); the Communist invasion in Laos, the Lomumba crisis in the Congo, and the US breaking off relations with Cuba (January 1961).

One has to wonder about the dedication of the Eisenhower-Dulles Goliath who, in the midst of all this international turmoil, found the time, energy and resources to clobber one little David.
5. Eisenhower, Nixon regret - when it's too late

There are two indispensable sources that report about the after-the-fact regrets that both Eisenhower and Nixon (as Vice President at the time) showed with regard to forcing Israel, France and the UK to withdraw from Egypt.

The first of these sources is Nixon's own memoirs. The relevant passage, written in first person by Nixon himself, reads as follows:
[O]n October 29, Israel invaded Egypt after several months of dispute over access to the Suez Canal. On November 5, the day before our election, British and French paratroops landed in Egypt to support the Israeli invasion and to protect their own rights there.
Eisenhower and Dulles put heavy public pressure on Britain, France, and Israel to withdraw their forces from Suez. In retrospect I believe that our actions were a serious mistake. Nasser became even more rash and aggressive than before, and the seeds of another Mideast war were planted. The most tragic result was that Britain and France were so humiliated and discouraged by the Suez crisis that they lost the will to play a major role on the world scene. From this time forward the United States would by necessity be forced to "go it alone" in the foreign policy leadership of the free world. I have often felt that if the Suez crisis had not arisen during the heat of a presidential election campaign a different decision would have been made.
Quoted from p. 179 of
Nixon, Richard. The Memoirs of Richard Nixon. New York: Grosset and Dunlap, 1978.
The second source is the "authorized biography" of Max Fisher. The relevant text is quoted below in full, to preempt the accusation of "quoting out of context". The setting was a meeting Max Fisher held with Eisenhower shortly before Eisenhower died:
[A]s Fisher's conversation with him [with Eisenhower] drew to a close, the former president wistfully commented: "You know, Max, looking back at Suez, I regret what I did. I never should have pressured Israel to evacuate the Sinai."

Fisher was astonished by the statement, but apparently he was not the only one to whom Eisenhower had divulged this information."Eisenhower," says Nixon, "many years later, in the 1960s, told me -- and I'm sure he told others -- that he thought that the action that was taken [at Suez] was one he regretted. He thought it was a mistake."
Fisher started to say goodbye to Eisenhower; it was then, almost as an afterthought, that Eisenhower revealed another startling facet of his reconsideration. Although the former president did not live long enough to witness the results -- in doing so he clarified the course of Fisher's political career.

"Max," Eisenhower said, "if I'd had a Jewish adviser working for me, I doubt I would have handled the situation the same way. I would not have forced the Israelis back."
Quoted from pages xviii to xix of:
Golden, Peter. Quiet Diplomat - A biography of Max M. Fisher. New York: Cornwall Books, 1992.

It would be useful for the sake of Israel and the West if the current Eisenhower would reflect on these regrets before he, too, blunders.

Posted by Joseph Alexander Norland at June 9, 2005 08:03 AM


3. October 1956 - January 1961 - (from the Sinai War to the end of Eisenhower's term)

30 Oct 1956 - In accordance with the trilateral agreement, an Anglo-French ultimatum is handed to the Israeli and Egyptian ambassadors in London, with the US ambassador receiving a copy. Of course, Israel accepts the ultimatum.Eisenhower explodes in anger, tries to pass a Security Council resolution which the UK and France veto.
31 Oct 1956 - UK military intervention fails to materialize on schedule as planned, and Ben-Gurion blames Eden's faulty leadership; Anglo-French bombing starts 13 hrs late in a time-sensitive operation.
01 Nov 1956 - Anglo-French troops begin moving towards Egypt - this belated movement allows Nasser to sink ships, block the Suez Canal and ultimately enables the US to pressure the UK to withdraw. Because the UK and France have veto power in the UN Security Council (UNSC), the US moves the debate to UN General Assembly (UNGA).
02 Nov 1956 - UNGA passes a resolution demanding cease-fire and withdrawal. The vote is 64:5, with 6 abstentions; the "no" votes are casts by Israel, the UK, France, Australia and New Zealand. US suspends aid to Israel. On the ground, Gaza strip falls into Israeli hands. There is bitter irony in the fact that to bully her allies, the US resorted to the UN -- the same UN that caused Bush all the grief when he decided to defang Saddam Hussein.

03 Nov 1956 - Egyptian army in Sinai collapses. Canada's Lester Pearson, with US inspiration, suggests replacing the foreign armies with a UN Emergency Force, UNEF.
04 Nov 1956 - Because the Suez Canal is closed, Britain asks the US for oil; Eisenhower refuses. On the ground, IDF continues to advance. This episode of Eisenhower turning on his allies probably didn't go unnoticed by politicians from other countries, who may well be excused for considering the US to be an unreliable ally. Also on this day, 04 November, 1956, Budapest falls to Soviet tanks but Eisenhower can do absolutely nothing where it counts.
05 Nov 1956 - Israel takes Sharam el Sheikh. Paratroops from France and the UK invade at last, but their progress is hesitant, as the political will in the UK collapses. Soviets send threatening letters even as they crush Hungary.
06 Nov 1956 - Amphibious assault by troops from the UK and France. US refuses $1 billion IMF loan to the UK until hostilities stop. Pushed by the US, Eden accepts the UN cease-fire and forces the French to accept too. Left alone, Israel too accepts the cease-fire after 8 days of war. The toll on IDF: 171 dead, one POW, 20 planes downed. Eisenhower elected president for second term.One should pause here for a moment to note the Eisenhower-Dulles folly. Nasser had already proved himself the West's enemy, and an impediment to the Baghdad pact that Dulles coveted. The US had a golden opportunity to remove Nasser, strengthen the West's influence in the Middle East and curb the Soviet interference. Instead, the US opted for turning on her allies, weakening the two major anti-Soviet European allies, and bullying the only democracy in the region. All this, in the worship of a myth about the sanctity of the UN. As the following entries indicate, the US folly is compounded further in the subsequent months and the proof of the folly is manifest shortly afterwards.

07 Nov 1956 - Ben-Gurion delivers a victory speech at the Knesset. In retrospect, the speech is considered a grave error: because of the arrogant tone, the speech generate an international backlash. UN votes 65-1 for an immediate, unconditional withdrawal - France and the UK abstain. Hammarskjold refuses to discuss any security guarantees for Israel. Soviet threats intensify.
08 Nov 1956 - Dulles meets Israel delegates, threatens to engineer UN sanctions and expulsion from the UN. Eisenhower refuses Ben-Gurion request for a meeting. Emergency cabinet meeting in Israel. One day after his victory speech, Ben-Gurion accepts the inevitability of withdrawal. It should be noted that while Ben-Gurion accepted the withdrawal in principle, over the following ten weeks he waged a ferocious fight against Eisenhower and Hammarskjold to gain security and navigation guarantees and to prevent Gaza from turning again into a fedayeen haven. Very different from the current Israeli prime minister who seems to cave in even before the shots are fired.
Mid Nov 1956 - Mid Jan 1957 - Partial withdrawal of Israeli troops, while Ben-Gurion spells out new objectives: Presence but no annexation of Gaza, iron-clad guarantees for withdrawal from Sharm el Sheikh. US, Hammarskjold refuse these terms. Complete withdrawal of Anglo-French troops. The US position at this point is not only bizarre but smacks of egregious unfairness. Egypt had no rights to Gaza; on the other hand, Egypt had used Gaza in the past as a basis for murderous fedayeen against Israeli civilians. Israel's demand for guaranteed passage in the Suez was justified, since the UN itself passed resolutions in that vein. And the demand for guaranteed passage in the Tiran Straits was justified because even the US considered the Straits to be international waters. Yet the US refused all Israel's demands, which makes one suspect that "unconditional withdrawal" became an irrational US obsession.

18 Nov 1956 - First Israeli ship makes it through the straits of Tiran to the port of Eilat.
21 Nov 1956 - An Egyptian assassination attempt against Camile Chamoun of Lebanon. Also at this time, Egypt intensifies its persecution of Egypt's Jews: concentration camps, revocation of citizenship and expulsions; Hammarskjold refuses to take any action. Eisenhower-Dulles are beginning to reap the fruit of appeasing Nasser. The anti-Chamoun subversion is only one in a series, as indicated in subsequent entries.

16 Dec 1956 - Encouraged by the anti-Israel position of the US and the UN, Arab terrorists resume major terrorist attacks: home detonated in Tel Mond, kills husband, wounds wife and children. On Christmas eve, terrorist detonate a water pipe near Beer Sheva. It is justified, to my mind, to hold Eisenhower-Dulles responsible for these deaths, as well as for the scores that followed.

27 Dec 1956 - One of many meetings between Israel (Golda Meir) and the US (Dulles), in which Israel asks for guarantees and the US demands total, unconditional withdrawal.
06 Jan 1957 - Arab terrorists sabotage Israeli water pipes and railways. On 13 January, terrorist sabotage phone lines in the Negev.19 Jan 1957 - Fourth UN resolution demands total, unconditional Israeli withdrawal; the resolution passes 74-2, with only Israel and France voting against. UN refuses any guarantees to Israel. Nasser refuses to clear the Suez Canal until total Israeli withdrawal is achieved; consequently, the "oil pressure" causes the countries which previously supported Israel's demands for guarantees, to deserted her, as reflected in the UN vote. Also on this day, Egypt, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Jordan reject the "Eisenhower Doctrine" but on 29 January, Eisenhower receives the Saudi King in Washington (see entry below). This episode demonstrates clearly the power of oil and the vulnerability of the civilized world to oil blackmail. In the following years, the Arabs learnt to play the West like a fiddle, using the oil blackmail as a permanent feature. It is appalling to note that to this day, nothing has been done to ease Western dependence on the very same oil. Also note the way Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries thank the US for Eisenhower's continual support; at the same time, courting the Saudis ceases not for a minute.

23 Jan 1957 - 75 democratic congressmen write to Dulles against total Israeli withdrawal, demanding navigation guarantees for free passage in the Tiran Straits and in through Suez Canal. Two days later (on 25 January 1957), 42 congressmen demand that at the UN, the US support a mandate for the UNEF to prevent Egyptian re-militarization of Gaza, Sinai and Sharm el-Sheikh. Eisenhower unmoved. This episode confirms my contention that the issue had become one of an Eisenhower-Dulles obsession, as the US administration works against its own interests. It should also be noted that three months into a constant battering of Israel, some US congressmen at last stand up to the administration.

29 Jan 1957 - King Ibn Saud visits Eisenhower, ties permission for the US to use the Daharan base, to supplying Saudi Arabia with arms and ensuring Israeli total capitulation. This visit is very reminiscent of the Saudi letter which changed Bush's attitude from non-intervention to an aggressive persecution of Israel (see my IsraPundit article on the topic).
03 Feb 1957 - Following Ibn Saud's visit, Eisenhower writes to Ben-Gurion, threatening UN sanctions. Two days later, on 05 February 1957, Dulles repeats the threat in a UN news conference. The heavy US hand continues to generate a backlash in Congress, including both minority and majority Senate leaders.
06 Feb 1957 - US Zionist leaders decide to publish ads condemning Dulles' call for sanctions against Israel.
15 Feb 1957 - Eban informs Dulles that Ben-Gurion has rejected the US demands; Eisenhower, Dulles set in motion preparations for sanctions, including the cancellation of the tax-free status of donations to Israel. Shipments of surplus US food to Israel are stopped. Note that at this point, Ben-Gurion had been in an all-out fight with Eisenhower-Dullas for three and one-half months. One must admire Ben-Gurion's tenacity and steadfastness - especially in comparison with today's spineless Sharon.

19 Feb 1957 - Faced with Ben-Gurion's steadfast position, and faced with objections to sanctions by the American people, Dulles agrees to modify his position somewhat; Eban carried the modified plan to Ben-Gurion. Other factors that changed Dulles' mind include: Canada's indication that she would not co-operate with sanctions; Germany's refusal to suspend reparation payments, as Dulles demanded; and France's announcement that she is extending Israel a $30 million credit and would increase shipments to Israel. This entry highlights two important points: (i) sustained pressure on the administration can generate a change, even with the most obdurate of administrations; (ii) while at the time Israel could find some support in countries such as Canada, France and Germany, today she is totally alone. This is the situation Israel's friends must address.

20 Feb 1957 - A bi-partisan group of legislators meets Eisenhower; he demands their support and they flatly refuse. Still, Eisenhower is undeterred, cables Ben-Gurion with new threats to vote for UN sanctions. Eisenhower also broadcasts these threats on national TV.
21 Feb 1957 - Dulles meets major Jewish businessmen in an attempt to get their support; not only do they refuse, but one of the delegates states these immortal words: "for our country to try to bludgeon Israel against its own vital interests is morally wrong". It is most unfortunate that the same words apply today with regard to Bush.24 Feb 1957 - Eban returns to Washington with Ben-Gurion's reply, works out an agreement with Dulles (on 28 February); in fact, Ben-Gurion yielded on holding on to Gaza, and the guarantees Israel receives from the US about free navigation are vague and proved worthless. The only achievement was the stationing of UNEF troops between Israel and Egypt, and this too proved worthless on the eve of the 1967 War. Thus, Eisenhower-Dulles succeeded in crushing tiny, brave Israel, paving the way to more Egyptian attacks and ultimately to the 1967 War. This chapter should go down as one of the most shameful in US history. Personally, I hold the US solely responsible for the 1967 War and for the soldiers Israel lost in that campaign.

01 Mar 1957 - At the UN, Golda Meir declares that Israel will withdraw from Gaza and the rest of Sinai. The withdrawal from Gaza took place on 07 March 1957.
11 Mar 1957 - Within days of the agreement with Dulles, which stipulated that the UN - and not Egypt - will control Gaza, Nasser sends administrator and staff to take over Gaza. UN remains silent and while the US 'expresses regret', she also warns Israel to take no action. On 14 March, US resumes aid to Israel. Thus was Israel betrayed again by her "best friend".
06 Apr 1957 - A US oil tanker loaded with crude docks in Eilat, symbolizing US support for free navigation in the Straits of Tiran. On 23 March 1957, however, Nasser announced that Israeli ships will not be allowed through the Suez Canal, and "the international community", including the US, does absolutely nothing.
18 Apr 1957 - Arab terrorism continues. Fire from Jordanian positions, mines in Israeli fields, Syrian fire on Israeli positions along Lake Kinneret. On 20 April, US demands that Israel refrain from retaliation. Clearly, the US had forgotten nothing and had learnt nothing - Talleyrand words continue to dominate world politics.
19 May 1957 - An Egyptian plot to murder the Saudi king is revealed. On 07 June it is revealed that Egyptian agents hatched another plot to assassinate both King Hussein and King Saud. The wisdom of the Eisenhower-Dulles policies is being revealed time and time again.
23 May 1957 - Israeli vehicle en route to Eilat is ambushed. On 29 May, a Kibbuz member is killed when his tractor hits an Egyptian mine. On 01 June, a border patrol hits an Egyptian mine.

18 Jun 1957 - USSR equips Egyptian navy with three submarines and arms the Syrian military. When, on 25 June, Dulles denounces the submarine transfer, Nasser announces that the submarines are needed to prevent Israeli navigation in the Gulf of Eilat. The folly of the US policies continues to unfold.
13 Jul 1957 - Sources reveal that the USSR has supplied Syria with $140 million in arms and has sent hundreds of "experts" with the equipment. On the same day, State announces that the US will not sell arms to Israel to counter the Soviet supplies to Syria. A further Syria-USSR agreement is announced on 06 August: the USSR forgave a large part of Syria's debt, granted a $115 million loan, supplied two submarines. On 11 August, Syria receives MIG-19 jets. On 15 August, Syria appoints a pro-Communist chief of staff. Whereas prior to the US-generated Sinai withdrawal Egypt was the only USSR client in the ME, the policies of Eisenhower-Dulles gave birth to a second client: Syria.

19 Aug 1957 - After detaining an Israel-bound, Norwegian ship for four days, Egypt allows the ship to continue through the Suez.
12 Sep 1957 - Syrian, Egyptian armies, under unified command. Another consequence of the Eisenhower-Dulles policy. The parallel with what is happening today is startling: it will not take long before the consequences of the Bush pressure on Israel to withdraw from Yesha lead to the same consequences.
29 Jan 1958 - Syrians open fire on Israeli policemen, kill three, wound six.
01 Feb 1958 - Sowing the seeds of new problems: Syria and Egypt unite, form United Arab Republic, UAR. Yemen joins on 9 Mar 1958.

16 Feb 1958 - Jordan opens a series of attacks against Israel, including random shootings and detonating phone polls. The UAR union sent Iraq and Jordan into a deep anxiety, seeking means to counter UAR's military might. Nonetheless, Jordan attacks Israel... This is known as ME logic.
06 Apr 1958 - Egypt receives three additional submarines from the East block.
30 Mar 1958 - In an attempt to stop Israel's draining of Lake Hula, Syrian artillery opens fire. The fire continues on the following day. Another in a series of examples where Arab states attempt to prevent or stall any development in Israel.
10 May 1958 - Civil war in Lebanon resulting from Nasser subversion: Camile (Camille) Chamoun's Government is threatened, as Moslems demand to join the Syria-Egypt union. Syrian agents enter Lebanon. US sends the 6th Fleet. On 22 May, Lebanon complains about UAR to the UN Security Council. Eisenhower-Dulles continue to reap the results of saving Nasser and permitting him to continue to undermine the West. Meantime, the US allies have been seriously weakened.

26 May 1958 - Jordanians open fire on Israeli policemen in Mount Scopus, kill three; also killed is the chairman of the Israel-Jordan MAC. As seen previously, even though Jordan, Iraq and Lebanon were under threat from UAR, Jordan nonetheless attacked Israel.
14 Jul 1958 - Aabdul Karim Kassem organizes coup in Iraq. Another country is about to fall into the Soviet orbit thanks to Eisenhower-Dulles.
15 Jul 1958 - In accordance with the Eisenhower Doctrine to aid any ME country that requests help to counter Communist subversion, the US sends 15,000 marines to Beirut in response to Chamoun's request. Two days later, on 17 July, Britain airlifts troops and arms to Jordan, fearing a coup similar to the Iraqi one; on the same day, French reinforcements land in Lebanon. On 21 July, Jordan severs relations with UAR. The antagonism withing the Arab block are now displayed to the world, indicating the folly of the thesis that Israel is the source of all the tension and instability in the ME.

24 Jul 1958 - Nasser's subversion threatens Jordan; US and Britain use Israeli air space to supply Jordan. To reiterate: The danger to Jordan is another direct consequence of Eisenhower-Dulles having saved Nasser.
15 Oct 1958 - Tunis severs relations with UAR because of Nasser's subversion. In fact, Nasser subversion may be found all over the Arab world - a direct result of the colossal mistake made by Eisenhower-Dulles. The examples of Yemen and Iraq are highlighted below, in addition to the examples of Tunis, Jordan and Lebanon, which were cited above.

06 Nov 1958 - Heavy Syrian fire directed against Israeli workers who are trapped until IDF called to ensure their evacuation. On November 19, the body of the wife of the British air attache to Israel was discovered close to the Syrian border, with indication that she was shot by Syrians from short range. On 03 December, the Syrians opened fire on an Israeli shepherd, killing him, and then began shelling the Jewish communities in the valley. Note how many incidents of anti-Israel aggression occurred withing one year of the Eisenhower-Dulles success in beating up Israel.
10 Nov 1958 - Hussein's plane attacked by Syrian air-force, escapes with difficulty and returns to Jordan.

27 Dec 1958 - UAR, USSR sign the Aswan Dam agreement.
20 Dec 1958 - Aerial battle between Israeli and Egyptian planes over the Negev.
13 Jan 1959 - Syria begins new round of terrorism, kidnaps two young Americans in Israeli territory. On 23 January 1959, the Syrians murder an Israeli shepherd, blow up a water pipe. Israel complains to the Security Council with the usual results.
9 Mar 1959 - Nasser arrests a Liberian ship passing the Suez Canal with an Israeli cargo en route to Ceylon. Four days later, a German ship with Israeli cargo is arrested and the cargo confiscated. Israel complains to the Security Council with the usual results. Eisenhower-Dulles can now score yet another victory.
12 Mar 1959 - Nasser supports an anti-Communist uprising in Iraq, attacks Communism. On 16 March, Khrushchev denounces Nasser, grants Iraq A large loan. on 25 March, Iraq quits the Baghdad pact. On 22 April, the USSR and Egypt reconcile, as the USSR promises to continue providing aid. Now, both the USSR and the US that are learning the depth of Arab loyalty. The Eisenhower-Dulles dream of a pro-Western Arab alliance suffers a severe but predictable setback.

04 May 1959 - The UK announces that she will supply Iraq with heavy armaments, including bomber jets, Centurion tanks.
22 May 1959 - In Port Said, Egypt arrests a Danish ship with Israeli cargo bound for Japan.
24 May 1959 - Dulles dies of stomach cancer at the age of 71.
16 Aug 1959 - Yemen quits the pact with the UAR, condemns Nasser's subversion.
06 Sep 1959 - More terrorism: Egyptian agents murder an IDF officer near the Sinai border.
22 Oct 1959 - Mein Kampf published in Egypt; first 1,000 copies sold withing two days. This piece of info is indicative of the underlying problem which Eisenhower-Dulles refused to acknowledge: the intrinsic rejection of the West by the Arabs, coupled with a profound anti-Semitic streak.

01 Dec 1959 - US grants a $50 million loan to the UAR. Again: they have forgotten nothing and have learnt nothing.
20 Dec 1959 - In the Suez, Egypt arrests a Greek ship carrying an Israeli cargo. Nasser avers that he will continue to deny Israel passage rights.
13 Jan 1960 - US declares willingness to fund second phase of the Aswan Dam; on 15 January, Egypt announces granting the contract to the USSR. Appeasement and ingratitude - a constant motif in the West-Arab relations.
28 Jan 1960 - Following Syrian fire that killed a Jewish Kibbutz member on 24 December 1959, armed Syrians invade Israeli territory. Over the subsequent two days, Syrians engage in fierce fire fights, and Israel retaliates.
06 Feb 1960> - Sources disclose that the USSR has supplied Egypt with eight submarines. MIG-19 planes and other modern weapons stream into Egypt. Setting the stage for the 1967 - thanks to Eisenhower-Dulles.

08 Mar 1960 - During an unofficial visit to the US, Ben Gurion meets Eisenhower, who refuses Ben-Gurion's request for Hawk missiles. As far as Israel is concerned, the final act of Eisenhower's reign is no difference from the opening act.
24 Apr 1960 - Eisenhower declares that he will not act against the Egyptian blockade in the Suez.
26 May 1960 - Incursion into Israel by Egyptian planes; Egyptians chased out by Israel's air force.
11 Jun 1960 - A new series of Syrian provocation begins: mines, fire opened on Israeli patrols, illegal Syrian fishers in Lake Kinneret. On 28 June, Syrian fire kills an IDF officer on patrol. As the provocations continue, Israel complains to the Security Council on July 1, but incidents continue.

26 Jul 1960 - Following Iran's recognition of Israel, Nasser attacks the Shah; on the following day, Iran severs relations with the UAR. Another US ally joins the list of those who Egypt identifies as marked men.
28 Aug 1960 - UAR agents assassinate Jordan's prime minister, who opposed the UAR. On the following day, a time-bomb is discovered in Hussein's palace. In his UN speech On 03 October 1960, Hussein condemns the UAR subversion. When Nasser visits Syria on 17 October, he calls for Hussein to be assassinated. One is almost tempted to believe that Nasser is deliberately attempting to prove the folly of the Eisenhower ME policy, even as Eisenhower is about to leave office.
20 Jan 1961 - JFK takes over from Eisenhower.

Posted by Joseph Alexander Norland at June 8, 2005 08:04 AM
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2. January 1953 - October 1956 (from Eisenhower's inauguration to the Sinai War)

20 Jan 1953 - Eisenhower assumes office.

Eisenhower's policy "viewed the Middle East as a region of great strategic political and economic importance to the Western world because it contained petroleum resources vital to the West's security and economic well being". Should the Soviets gain a Middle East position from which they could restrict this oil supply, "Western Europeans' will to resist communist collaboration would be greatly weakened." Because the establishment of the state of Israel was in Arab eyes a result of Western and especially U.S. support, it was hoped that Arab cooperation against the Soviets could be gained by at least publicly downplaying the relationship with the Jewish state while at the same time maintaining the moral commitment to its existence." [p. 21] The policy adopted was "evenhandedness", officially termed "Friendly Impartiality".

29 Jan 1953 - Jordanian troops fire on an Israeli patrol. This incident is one of numerous acts of aggression by Jordan, Syria and Egypt, from which a steady stream of murderous infiltrators keeps marauding Israel. As the documentation below indicates clearly, the theme of Arab aggression, followed by Israeli retaliation, followed by US denunciation, is a permanent fixture of the years since the rebirth of Israel.

16 Feb 1953 - The British parliament approves the sale of military jets to Arab countries. This event represents one of Israel's major problems: while the British and Americans keep selling ever-more sophisticated arms to the Arab countries, they adamantly refuse any sales and security guarantees to Israel. As seen below, arms sales constitute a permanent feature in Israeli relations with the West.

26 Feb 1953 - Fierce battle with Jordanian troops who invaded Israeli territory. Jordan complains to the governments of the UK and the US. The UK warns Israel that British troops will have to intervene in accordance with the UK-Jordan defence agreement. Other serious incidents with Jordan occurred on 21-24 April 1953; 27 May, 1953. Interestingly, Britain keeps invoking her defence agreement with Jordan to threaten Israel, even as Israel is attacked.

Britain used the defence agreement with Egypt as a club to constraint Israel from winning decisively against Egypt in 1948/9. Ironically, the Brits were soon to be turfed out of both Egypt and Jordan, with the removal of John Glubb being particularly humiliating - see below.
02 Mar 1953 - Faisal al-Saud, the Saudi foreign minister, visits Washington; the White House statement clearly implies reversing Truman's policy, in line with the new "evenhandedness". Recall that it was a letter from Crown Prince Abdullah that also changed Bush's policy from "hands off" to the calamity of the Roadmap. See IsraPundit article on this issue.

08-11 Apr 1953 - Israeli foreign minister, Moshe Sharett, holds talks with Henry Byroade, the Middle East undersecretary for the Middle East (ME). Ignoring Sharett's questions about arms sales and security guarantees, Byroade asks about Israel's readiness to make territorial concessions. On Ben-Gurion's orders, Sharett flatly refuses. Byroade also demands return of refugees. In a further meeting at the State Department, with Dulles himself, Sharett repeats his suggestion for a US-Israel defence pact. A defence pact with the US would have deterred the terrorist acts from Egypt, Syria and Jordan, which characterized the subsequent months. But the US was bent on appeasing the Arabs in an attempt to seduce them into a regional defence pact, at Israel's expense, of course. The guise was "working towards a peaceful solution" by squeezing Israel on territory, "refugees" and Jerusalem. The overall US strategy and tactics do not seem to have changed to date. The difference is the prime minister: Ben-Gurion, rather than Sharon.

09 May 1953 - Dulles, Byroade and other State officials leave on a 20-day ME tour. In Egypt, Naguib and Nasser told the delegation that their problem was Britain (that had a military presence), not Communism. Arab leaders in other countries identified the problem as Israel, and the US policy which was being made by Zionists. Visiting Israel, Dulles lectured the leader about Jewish pressures. Even while en route, Dulles developed the thinking that step by step he must appease the Arabs: more aid, help to get Britain out of Egypt, help to settle refugees. This summary of the crucial trip by Dulles et al highlights just how little things have changed in half a century, except that Egypt is no longer obsessed with removing the British forces.

01 Jun 1953 - Dulles' delivers a TV address about his tour: calls for "evenhandedness", implies that Israel is to blame for refugee problem. The "new policy" is rearing its ugly head. To my mind, this shift is no different in principle from Bush's Rose Garden speech, 24 June 2002, which, for the first time, reflected presidential endorsement of an Arab state in Yesha. The two speeches were given 49 years apart, but the thinking is basically the same.

11 Jul 1953 - Eisenhower approves NSC policy, influenced by the Byroade-Dulles thinking and oil interests pressure. The relevant document is "Recommendation 155/1, US Objectives and Policies with Respect to the Near East". In line with this now official policy of "evenhandedness", on the same day, State condemns the move of the Israeli Foreign Ministry from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on the previous day. Significantly, Dulles was advised about the move during his visit to Israel and his only request was not to implement the move during his tour of the ME. Another element that has not changed in 52 years: US obstruction of Israel's efforts to turn Jerusalem into a capital in fact.
15 Jul 1953 - Another step in the context of the new thinking: Eisenhower promises Egypt's President Naguib aid as soon as the problem of the British military in the Suez is resolved.
02 Sep 1953 - A new problem surfaces: Israel begins a water diversion plan, with the starting point within the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) on the border with Syria. Naturally, Syria objects, and the UN representative, Bennike supports Syria. US threatens to cut off aid if Israel continues with the project. (The Danish General Vagn Bennike was the head of the UN Truce Supervision Organization, UNTSO). Three perpetual elements are reflected in this incident: (i) the constant obstruction by Israel neighbours any time Israel attempts to develop the land; (ii) the UN siding with Israel's enemies, especially when Scandinavians are involved - Bernadotte, Hammarskjold, Bennike, etc. (Trygve Lie, the first Secretary General of the UN, is an exception); (iii) the US, as an unreliable ally, uses the whip of withholding aid, especially when the US is afflicted by acute bouts of "evenhandedness".

13 Sep 1953 - Israel-bound ships stopped in the Suez Canal; Israel complains to the UN. As usual, even when the West agrees with Israel, it takes no steps to remedy the damage caused to Israel. The UN then turns around and threatens Israel not to use force. When Israel does, she is condemned. This phenomenon is another constant.

29 Sep 1953 - Dulles, in preparation for a meeting with Eban, receives from Byroade a memo spelling out demands from Israel before aid might be restored: "reconsider" Jewish immigration policy; stop work on diversion of Jordan water sources; accept UN water plan currently under preparation; cease retaliation; repatriate refugees. This memo contains the most outrageous demands that would not only freeze Israel's development, but indeed destroy her. Unlike Bush's pressure, however, Israel, under Ben-Gurion, resisted every demand. Nonetheless, it shows just how far the US administration is willing to go to appease the Arabs.

13 Oct 1953 - Grenade thrown into house in Tirat Yehuda, killed mother, two children. Even the Israel-Jordan Mixed Armistice Commission (MAC) held Jordan liable. This terrorist act is an example of the constant terror to which Egypt and Jordan subjected Israel. Normally, the MAC, headed by anti-Israel UN officials, declined to condemn the aggressors.

14-15 Oct 1953 - In retaliation for the terror act of Oct 13, Unit 101 under Sharon dynamited 42 houses in Kibya, killing 66 Arabs. The condemnation of Israel is global: including UN agent Bennike; Britain demands Security Council debate, Churchill protests. In line with the new administration's appeasement policy, US sends Israel a particularly tough note. In fact, after Kibya, the murders resulting from Jordanian infiltration fell considerably. This episode reflects the traditional lining up of nations against Israel. It also recalls the times when Sharon was a fighter rather than one who flees.

16 Oct 1953 - Eisenhower appoints Eric Johnston, who later developed the Johnston water plan. Johnston's efforts continued for two years, to October 1955. The Johnston episode is an example of Eisenhower's efforts to achieve peace through small steps of development, economic growth, and settling the "refugees". Johnston failure , in turn, reflects the one point Eisenhower failed to grasp: the Arabs were not (and still are not) interested in any of these; their object is to remove the West, especially Israel, from the ME, even to their own detriment.

17 Oct 53 - Johnston's first visit to the ME; visits Israel on 27 Oct 1953. Arabs make demands regarding the size of the water allocation to Israel, and demand that Israel use the water only for the Jordan Valley - Israel wanted the water to develop the Negev. A typical example of the egregious demands Arabs make - and mostly, they get away with it because of Western cowardice.

18 Oct 1953 - UN Security Council condemns Israel in the matter of Kibya. This, of course, could not have happened without the US support, indicating just how far the US efforts to appease the Arabs would go.

26 Oct 1953 - A Jewish delegation meets Dulles, reminds him that the US has done nothing regarding Egypt's violation of the Security Council's resolution regarding Israel's navigation in the Suez, or Arab incursions into Israel. The meeting ended acrimoniously but the pressure soften the previous US position: To pressure Israel to suspend work on the water diversion plan, Dulles had suspended the meagre assistance Israel received via the Mutual Security Act (MSA) on October 20.

27 Oct 1953 - Security Council unanimously adopts a French resolution to support a temporary suspension of Israel's water work. Israel accepts, in accordance with a compromise worked out with Eban in advance. Aid under MSA is resumed. Though both Dulles and Eisenhower resented Jewish pressure, it did help somewhat, as this example shows. Similarly, enough pressure today could have derailed the Roadmap and the Deportation, but Jewish pressure is absent. This example also highlights the economic vulnerability of Israel.

29 Oct 1953 - The administration's Operations Control Board, OCB, consisting of the representatives of the CIA, State, and other analysts, suggest that Israel must limit Jewish immigration as a condition for US aid. The OCB, which recommends policy and supervises its implementation, even goes as far as to set limits on Jewish immigration to Israel: 1953 - 73,000; 1954 - 54; 1955 - 41.1. This little-known and vexing episode calls to mind the micro-management the US has now undertaken with regard to the Roadmap. It also reflects the US insensitivity to the basic aspirations of Israel: serving as a safe haven for Jews.

24 Nov 1953 - Ben-Gurion resigns, retires to Sdeh Boker; Moshe Sharett becomes premier. Israel has fallen into the hands of a weak-kneed bleeding-heart; as Oslo and the Roadmap show, not for the last time.

16 Jan 1954 - Yet another Eban-Dulles meeting in which Israel asks to purchase arms and protests arms sales to the Arabs.

27 Jan 1954 - Israel again complains to the UN Security Council about the Egyptian blockade in the Suez canal. On Mar 28 the USSR uses her veto to stop a draft resolution demanding an end to the Suez blockade.

17 Mar 1954 - One of the most horrible terrorist attacks on Israel to that date: a passenger bus is attacked en route to Beer Sheva - 11 Israelis murdered. When the Israel-Jordan MAC refuses to condemn Jordan, Israel quits the MAC. Two days earlier, on 15 Mar 1954, Syrians shell Israeli boats in Lake Kinneret.

02 Apr 1954 - Turkey and Pakistan sign a mutual defense agreement; in February 1955, with the joining of Iran, Iraq, and the UK, they form the Baghdad Pact - see below, entry for 24 February 1955. This pact is part of Dulles' policy to ring the USSR with pro-western pact members. The implications for Israel surfaced immediately: Israel's enemies would be armed and aided by the US, while Israel is to be shunned.

26 Apr 1954 - US agrees to provide arms to Iraq, as enticement to join the future Baghdad pact; Israel protests in vein.

01 May 1954 - Byroade speaks to an American anti-Zionists group, the American Council for Judaism. He presents OCB demands as official US policy. State disseminates the speech widely in Arab countries, to gain Arabs' favour. Arabs rejoice, furor in Israel. Eban files a protest with Dulles. The policy of "evenhandedness" is becoming progressively repressive, just like the Roadmap policy is becoming currently.

Jul 1954 - Chief of Staff Moshe Dayan is invited to visit General Guillaume, the French Chief of Staff. A French agreement to sell Israel Ouragan and Mystere II planes, as well as AMX tanks and radar. Beginnings of a short but vital French-Israel friendship. In this respect, things have changed for the worse - currently, Israel has no friends.

28 Sept 1954 - The Israeli ship Bat Galim is sent through the Suez Canal; the ship and crew are arrested, in violation of the 1951 Security Council resolution. Until the Bat Galim incident, Egypt allowed Israel-bound ships flying foreign flags to pass; subsequently, Egypt prohibited these ships too, as subsequent entries indicate. Security Council refuses to act on the Bat Galim issue. The crew spends 95 days in captivity, the ship is never returned. The Bat Galim incident reflects the contempt shown by both the UN and the US for Israel and for any standard of decency. Bat Galim highlights that in any real test, Israel stands alone, while the world stands by and watches with indifference or hostility. Nothing has changed since the Holocaust.

19 Oct 1954 - Final Suez agreement signed by the UK and Egypt under US pressure. Israel deeply concerned, as the British army that serves as a buffer will be removed, and no provision for Israeli navigation was made. US considers the agreement to be an achievement, hoping that Egypt will now join the embriyonic Baghdad pact. The US pressure reflects the US myopia, whenever Arabs are concerned. It will get progressively worse as the Sinai War of 1956 approaches. Bush is a living example of the same type of myopia displayed right now.

Nov 1954 - US, UK discuss secret Alpha Plan for ME peace, even while Johnston's mission is getting nowhere. The Alpha Plan includes the demand that Israel relinquish part of the Negev and accept "refugees". The Alpha Plan, hatched even while the Johnston mission is failing, represents an example of the refusal of the West to learn from mistakes. It is as mind boggling as it is infuriating.

04 Jan 1955 - Representatives of the US, UK and France call upon Egypt to stop the anti-Israel blockade in the Suez. Egypt announces that the blockade would continue.
21 Jan 1955 - Egyptian troops kill three Israeli soldiers. Israel-Egypt Mixed Armistice Commission (MAC) condemns Egypt. As Israel feared, no sooner was the Anglo-Egyptian agreement on the Suez signed, when the war against Israel intensified. The MAC condemnation of Egypt was rare, and in any case, useless.
24 Jan 1955 - Egyptians ambush Israeli farmers at Ein Hashlosha. This incident represents the worsening of the security situation in Israel, 1955, and with it, the deterioration of the population's morale. Ben-Gurions "retirement" becomes a luxury Israel could not afford. The same applies to the absence of a strong leader right now.
21 Feb 1955 - Ben-Gurion, who resigned on 24 Nov 1953, returns to Sharett's government as Defence Minister. It is clear that from this point on, Egyptian incursions and murder will not go unpunished.
24 Feb 55 - Baghdad pact signed: initially, between Iraq and Turkey, followed shortly afterwards by the joining of the UK, Iran, and Pakistan. The US does not join officially, but her blessing and financing are evident to all. Egypt, courted assiduously by the US at the expense of Israel and the UK, failed to join. In fact, by this time, Egypt had been playing it's duplicitous role for quite some time, but Dulles's eyes are too occluded to see. Egypt's anti-Western policy will intensify in subsequent months and years, and will include open subversion.
28 Feb 1955 - Ben-Gurion's avenging hand is evident: Israel retaliates against Egypt for Bat Galim and Fedayeen terrorism by attacking Gaza - 37 Egyptian soldiers die. Israel loses 8 fallen IDF soldiers. On 29 March 1955, the UN Security Council adopts its standard condemnation of Israel. Another in a series of examples showing the UN as an instrument of the Arabs to clobber Israel.

29 Feb 1955 - Byroade moves from a Washington desk at the State Department to become ambassador to Egypt. From the outset, Nasser demands US arms. Byroade recommends $27 million in arms, which Dulles offers free, provided Egypt joins an anti-Communist alliance. Nasser rejects, and playing one power against the other, turns to the USSR.
06 Mar 1955 - Egypt establishes the Arab Pact, together with Syria and Saudi Arabia, as a challenge to the Eisenhower-Dulles Baghdad Pact. The Egyptian-inspired Arab Pact illustrates just how profoundly the Eisenhower-Dulles policy had failed. Notwithstanding the appeasement and anti-Israel policies, Egypt et al continued their anti-US policies.

13 Apr 1955 - As Israel's security situation worsens further, Eban discusses with Dulles Israel's request for a defense agreement with the US; Dulles refuses.
17 May 1955 - In one of an endless series of terrorist acts, an Egyptian mine kills three Israeli offices and severely wounds two other soldiers. Israel retaliates on the following day. Exchange of fire Israel-Egypt follows on 21 May 1955.
23 May 1955 - USSR offers Egypt arms, aid, and financing for the Aswan Dam, in return for cotton. This episode reflect the major difference between 1955 and 2005: the USSR has been removed from the stage, and the Arabs can no longer play one power against the other. Nor do they need to: the US is squarely in the Arab court. Sometime, Bush may reflect on the 1955 lesson: regardless of how zealously Dulles courted Egypt, Nasser gave nothing. In time, the USSR was to learn the same lesson.

30 May 1955 - Egyptian forces fire on Israeli vehicle. Fire erupts along the entire border; 8 Israelis die, settlements shelled.
20 Jul 1955 - Egyptian delegation flies to Czechoslovakia to shop for arms. A week later, on 27 July, the UK announces the sale of war ships to Egypt. On August 9, it is reveals that Switzerland sold Egypt sophisticated anti-tank weapons that Switzerland had refused to sell to Israel. And on 28 August, the USSR announces its willingness to sell Egypt any arms Egypt requires. These items reveal Nasser's uncanny success in tapping into both East and West, while Israel is left with no ally to supply it with arms.
12 Aug 1955 - Egypt announces that any ship entering the Straits of Tiran requires that a license be issued 72 hours in advance.
25-26 Aug 1955 - Fedayeen start a week's campaign of terror all over Israel; 11 Israelis die.

26 Aug 1955 - Dulles delivers speech at the Council for Foreign Relations, CFR. Emphasizes problems of "refugees", mutual fears, need for fixed borders. Suggests: settlement of refugees in their current countries of residence, coupled with repatriations; development assisted by water projects; US and international aid to finance development; additional US aid to all parties to find border agreement, followed by US guarantees. This speech reflects some movement in Dulles' thinking. Byroade's venomous effect had been removed from State, and Dulles began to realize the games Nasser was playing - Nasser, in fact, orchestrated the opposition to the Baghdad pact. Noteworthy is Dulles' change regarding the "refugees".
01 Sep 1955 Retaliation for fedayeen attacks: Unit 101 attacks Khan Yunis, 36 Egyptian soldiers killed. Israel loses one fallen soldier. Same day, Israel shoots down two Egyptian jets over Israel.
11 Sep 1955 - Egyptian retaliating for Khan Yunis: Nasser closes Straits of Tiran to shipping to and from Elat.

29 sep 1955 - Egypt requests $240 million from the World Bank for the Aswan Dam project. The world Bank is supposed to judge on the basis of the economic merits of the project, and notes that Egypt had already "mortgaged" her future cotton production to finance the arms deal; therefore, future loans to Egypt from a third party would require the World Banks approval. Additionally, Sudan had to agree to the project.
04 Oct 1955 - In a news conference, Dulles in fact blames Israel's Gaza operation for Egypt's arms deal with the USSR. Israel points to the Baghdad pact as the cause. Dulles view, as expressed in the news conference, reflect his overall assessment that Israel is a millstone around the neck of the US. The fact that Nasser was out to lead the Arab world according to his nationalistic aspirations evaded Dulles.

07 Oct 1955 - Arab league rejects Johnston water-sharing plan by "postponing" the decision. Eisenhower refuses to blame the Arabs. At this point the difference between Eisenhower and Neville Chamberlain evaporates. Clearly, the Arabs can do no wrong, even as they lead Eisenhower by the nose with the usual tactics of feigning acceptance until the last moment, when rejection is deceitfully dealt as a surprise blow.
11 Oct 1955 - Another in a series of Israeli requests that the US supply Israel with arms, especially in view of the arms shipments to Egypt. This issue becomes even more pressing when Egypt and Syria unified their military commands on 17 October.

26 Oct 1955 - Sharett meets representatives of the major powers in Geneva; tries to have USSR cancel the arms deal with Egypt, tries to find an arms supplier for Israel. Dulles refuses both arms sales and pressure on Nasser. Dulles also warns Sharett against preemption. The French offer Israel Mystere IV jets. The French Foreign Minister, Piney, shows aversion to Nasser over Algeria. This episode continues the Franco-Israel relationship that began when Dayan was invited by the French chief of Staff (see July 1954 above).

29 Oct 1955 - In retaliation for a long series of terror attacks, Israel captures 29 Egyptian POWs.

02 Nov 1955 - Following the July election in Israel, Ben-Gurion presents his new government to parliament, warns Egypt that closure of the Straits of Tiran is considered casus belli, and outlines the benefits for Egypt from peace. Ben-Gurion offers to meet Nasser at any time, at any place.

03 Nov 1955 - After Egypt occupied positions on Israel's side of al Auja's Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), IDF launched an operation to eject the invaders, killing 50 Egyptians and capturing the territory. General Burns condemns Israel. Once again one notes that Israel can get no justice in international fora. General Burns, a Canadian, is no exception.

09 Nov 1955 - Anticipating Sharett's visit, Eisenhower released statements calling on Israel and the Arabs to make concession and settle their differences. Arms sales to Israel and security agreements with her are dismissed. Eisenhower decides to send Robert Anderson to push Alpha Plan on Israel and Egypt. Eisenhower's proposals are endorsed by Eden. Regarding the Alpha Plan, see entry for November 1954 above. Note that Eisenhower revived the Alpha Plan notwithstanding the rejection by the Arabs of the Johnston water-sharing plan. The US administration had still not grasped that the Arabs seek no accommodation of any kind - their object has always been the destruction of Israel.

15 Nov 1955 - In the Knesset, Ben-Gurion rejects the Eisenhower-Eden proposals.
17 Nov 1955 - Byroade, now US ambassador to Egypt, meets Foreign Minister Fawzi who accepts mediation along the lines of the Alpha Plan in principle.
21 Nov 1955 - Sharett meets Dulles in Washington to discuss arms sales to Israel; instead, Dulles discusses the Alpha Plan, demands territorial concessions. When Sharett refuses, Dulles demanded a written response, warns Israel not to use force. In this crucial meeting with Sharett, Dulles displays the full arrogance and brutal pressure that the US has adopted in her dealings with Israel, foreshadowing what is to transpire during the Sinai campaign and subsequently - to this very day.

05 Dec 1955 to 09 Mar 1956 - 180 Fedayeen incidents engineered by Egypt.
06 Dec 1955 - Sharett forwards to Dulles Ben-Gurion's reasonse rejecting territorial concession, demanding an end to the Arab boycott as a good will gesture, demanding compensation for the Jewish property confiscated by the Arabs in the old city of Jerusalem, in gush Etzion, in Neve Yaakov, and in Naharayim. Sharett repeats Israel's request for arms. Dulles would not give up on the Alpha Plan.
10 Dec 1955 - Syrians attack Israeli fishing boat in Lake Kinneret. On the following day, Ben-Gurion orders retaliation against Syria. 56 Syrians dead, 30 taken prisoner. On 20 January 1956, UN Security Council condemns Israel; General Burns demands sanctions against Israel. The cycle of 10-11 December is a typical one, and has not changed to this day. Under a strong leader, Israel hits back at her enemies, the "international community" turns a blind eye to the terrorists, excoriating Israel. The UN agent on the ground, whether the Canadian Burns or the Scandinavian Bennike, is always at the head of the anti-Israel calumny.

13 Dec 1955 - Washington rejects yet another Israeli request for arms, using the operation against Syria as an excuse. Note that this is the n-th time the US rejects Israel's request for arms and security guarantees. At the same time, as seen in the next entry, even while the Arabs rebuff the US, Eisenhower continues to court them. The appeasement is designed to prevent further USSR inroads, and to tie up Egypt's money so that Egyptian funds may no longer be applied to purchasing additional arms.
16 Dec 1955 - Washington and London offer Nasser $200 million in addition to $200 million from the World Bank. Shortly afterwards, on 07 January 1956, British tanks arrive in Egypt.

11 Jan 1956 - Anderson meets Nasser as part of his secret mission to sell the Alpha Plan; offers Nasser huge economic aid in return for peace talks with Israel and for spearheading the drive for peace among the Arab countries. Nasser rejects Anderson's overtures, explains to Kermit Roosevelt, his confidant, that he would be assassinated if he agreed. In response to Anderson, Nasser demands refugee return and 'contiguity', meaning all of the Israeli Negev. Even with these demands, Nasser rejects direct talks with Israel. Thus, the failure of the Johnston mission failed to teach Eisenhower/Dulles that the Arabs in general, and Nasser in particular, had no interest in peace; as seen subsequently, the failure of the Anderson mission didn't act as a sobering experience either.
16 Jan 1956 - Sharett writes to Dulles, warning about Israel's precarious condition, asks for arms. Two days later, on 18 January, a Syrian arms deal with Czechoslovakia is announced. Another Israeli request for arms, another arms deal for the Arabs...

23 Jan 1956 - Anderson meets Ben-Gurion in secrecy. Ben-Gurion emphasizes readiness for direct talks at any level, demands US arms. In response, Anderson demands concessions. By now this cycle is all too familiar: Israel asks for arms and security guarantees, the US rejects arms requests and counters with demands for concessions. Fortunately, Israel at that time is headed by a strong leader, unlike the current situation.
25 Jan 1956 - Eban pleads with Dulles for arms; Eban is again unsuccessful.
27 Feb 1956 - Even though Anderson's mission failed, Eisenhower writes to Ben-Gurion and Nasser in an attempt to initiate peace talks. Furthermore, the US again rejects Israel's request for arms and offers Nasser loans for the Aswan Dam. It must be noted with amazement that the US keeps repeating the same vain attempts to snare the Arabs into peace talks, expecting a different result with each attempt.

28 Jan 1956 - In a public statement, Eleanor Roosevelt and other prominent Democrats demand that US counter Soviet advances in the ME by providing Israel with arms; the statement is endorsed by Truman, Walter Reuter (vice president of the AFL-CIO). In assessing the Democrats' public statement, it should be recalled that 1956 was an election year.
30 Jan 1956 - Eban goes public with Israel's demand for arms, in a speech to the Women's National Democratic Club.

03 Feb 1956 - 40 Republican house members write to Dulles, urge him to match Soviet arms shipments to Egypt with arms to Israel. Dulles rejects the plea. One has to wonder at the depth of Dulles' blindness and conceit.
06 Feb 1956 - Another plea from Eban for arms. Dulles refuses and voices resentment over the Israeli pressure. Another old Eisenhower/Dulles theme: resentment over pressure from Israel/Zionists/Jews, but never any resentment over pressure from the Arabists or the oil interests. With time, the Eisenhower/Dulles resentment transforms itself into a vow never to yield, in the name of what they consider "the national interest".

06 Mar 1956 - Anderson back in Cairo to push Alpha Plan. Nasser rejects compromise that would have opened negotiations with Israel, cite's King Abdullah's assassination when Abdullah negotiated with Israel in secret. Nasser also rejects Anderson's refugee compromises - partial settling in their current country of residence. On territorial concessions, rejects Anderson's proposal for a corridor Egypt-Jordan through the Negev, demanding the entire Negev. Nasser adds that even if Israel accepts the settlement he demands, it must be presented as a US proposals to the Arab world... The Anderson/Nasser meeting of March 6, 1956, should have been an eye opener even for the US, as Nasser showed clearly that he was singularly uninterested in peace talks, but keenly interested in concessions to appear the Arab strongman. But none are as blind as those who will not see. With only slight changes, this scenario was repeated in Camp David when the Clinton/Dennis Ross duo wrung a sea of concessions from Israel, only to see Arafat reject the peace plan as a whole.

09 Mar 1956 - Anderson meets Ben-Gurion who focuses on arms requests to counterbalance the Soviet-Nasser menace. Ben-Gurion hints that without US arms, Israel will seek to defang Egypt before it is too late. This watershed meeting is the prelude to the Sinai campaign which turned into reality six months later. Clearly, it was US policy that caused the Sinai campaign, just as it was the US policy 1957-1967 that caused the Six-Day War.

12 Mar 1956 - Anderson reports to Eisenhower, who starts a process of disillusionment with Nasser. Same day, Eban hands the US secret intel about Nasser plan to undermine arab pro-Western regimes, a plan spelled out in a Cairo conference of Egyptian Ambassadors, held on Jan 30, 1956. As part of the plan, Nasser effectively forced King Hussein to dismiss John Glubb, the commander of the Jordanian Army, together with other British brass. Also on this day, Israel complains to the MAC about Egyptian arms concentrations in Gaza and in el Arish. Eisenhower's disillusionment is too little too late, and in any case it didn't prevent the US conduct during and after the Sinai campaign.

14 Mar 1956 - Israel complains to the UN Security Council about 180 fedayeen incidents which occurred in the period Dec 5 1956 to Mar 9 1956. General Burns scoffs at the complaint. Increasingly, Israel's complaints to the UN resemble the complaints of Jews to the German police during the 193O's. In this respect, "nothing has changed in the UN, except for the good things".

28 Mar 1956 - Dulles outlines post-Anderson policy: (i) continue to deny arms to Israel, but allow other Western countries to sell arms to Israel; (ii) US would also stop selling arms to all ME countries except for Iraq, Saudi Arabia; (iii) deny Egypt all aid, including funding of the Aswan Dam; (iii) increase support for Baghdad pact, but without actually joining.
04 Apr 1956 - Israel retaliates for recent fedayeen attacks by bombarding Gaza - 62 Arabs die. Nasser responds by escalated fedayeen attacks, including an attack in the outskirts of Tel Aviv. US leads a UN resolution to send Hammarskjold to ME. One has to wonder at this post-Anderson time, what the US expected to gain by sending Hammarskjold, except for adding yet another anti-Israel personality to the cauldron.

10 Apr 1956 - Hammarskjold meets Nasser et al, requests cease-fire. Nasser agrees to a cease fire to commence next day, 11 April, but sends more fedayeen anyway. An example of the quintessential Arab way of doing business: agreeing in words, opposing in deeds. This is the very policy that Arafat II is using currently.

12 Apr 1956 - in a public letter to the Security Council, Israel documents that notwithstanding Nasser promises, his fedayeen engaged in 8 raids, killed 3 children and an adult and wounded 15 others. Egypt also engages in flights over Israel.

15 Apr 1956 - Hammarskjold in Israel: demands free movement for UN observers, suggests that both sides move troops 500 meters from current borders. Israel emphasizes her concerns: blockades of the Suez and the Gulf of Aqaba, rearmament, state of war, war of incitement. Nonetheless, Ben-Gurion agrees to more UN observers, to a cease-fire, and to freer movement for UN personnel.

23 Apr 1956 - Peres signs first agreement with France to procure 12 Mystere jets.
26 Apr 1956 - Rabbi Silver, one of the few Jews with access to the White House, meets Eisenhower, urges sale of defensive weapons to Israel. Eisenhower expresses resentment over "Zionist pressure", refused arms; Dulles approves Canadian and French arms sales. This development shows just how slowly thinking changes - if it ever does. After being rebuffed by Nasser time and time again, Eisenhower makes one tiny step and approves sale of Arms to Israel by third parties. The policy of dissociating the US from Israel, the "millstone around our neck", had not changed.

16 May 1956 - Nasser recognizes china - US livid with rage.
18 Jun 1956 - As Ben-Gurion plans for war, he pressures Sharett to resign; Sharett is replaced with Golda Meir.
22 Jun 1956 - Peres and Dayan conduct a secret mission to France to set in motion a major arms deal.

19 Jul 1956 - US informs Egypt about withdrawing financial support for the Aswan Dam project; Britain withdraws on the following day.

26 Jul 1956 - Nasser announces nationalization of the Suez Canal; the step is aimed expressly against Britain: 44% of the shares are held by the British government and 1/3 of the ships passing the Canal are British. The Arabs are paying the British Arabists for their anti-Zionist stance in the usual Arab coin of ingratitude.

29 Jul 1956 - US-France-Britain hold consultation in London Eisenhower, Dulles oppose the use of force. It is amazing to note how generals, who learnt from their own experience about the ability of force to stifle tyrants, are transformed into politicians with feet of clay. Colin Powell, Eisenhower, Rabin and Sharon are probably not the only ones.

16 Aug 1956 - London conference of Suez Canal users. Egypt, Greece decline to attend. Nasser rejects international authority from the outset. This is underscored when, on 3 September 1956, a conference delegation headed by Australian PM meets Nasser, who, once again, rejects any international intervention. The position of Greece, supposedly a member of NATO and recipient of endless Anglo-American aid, is quite surprising. Uniquely among Europe's nations, Greece also voted against the UN Partition Plan of 29 Nov 1947.01 Sep 1956 - French troops from Algeria are redeployed in Cyprus. French admiral Barjot inquires whether Israel would join France against Egypt. French ire against Egypt is centered on the Egyptian support for the anti-French terrorists in Algeria, as well as on the nationalization of the Suez. The inquiry is followed on 07 September 1956, by talks in Paris between Barjot and the IDF
08 Sep 1956 - Eisenhower sends letter to Eden, opposing any military action against Egypt and threatening "bad US-UK relations" if his advice is ignored.
11 Sep 1956 - Israel attacks Jordan's Qarya military base in retaliation for recent terrorist attacks, especially the murder of six Israeli soldiers on the previous day.
12 Sep 1956 - Anglo-French talks about action against Egypt. Britain encounters Labour opposition to the use of force, in addition to the US pressure, resulting in the UK abandoning the military option temporarily.

12 Sep 1956 - Arab terrorists murder three Israeli-Druze guards in the Negev. Israel retaliates against Jordan by blowing up a Jordanian police station.
19 Sep 1956 - Peres in Paris for talks, as the time for decision on military action approaches.
22 Sep 1956 - Jordanians open fire on archaeologists in Ramat Rachel, kill 4, wound 16. On the following day, terrorists murder a woman in a village just outside Jerusalem.
25 Sep 1956 - Israel retaliates for Ramat Rachel and other terrorist action by attacking Hussan police station, killing 39 Jordanian troops; Israel loses six soldiers.
29 Sep 1956 - Dayan, Golda Meir, Peres fly to Paris secretly. French suggest the "pretext strategy": Israel to invade Egypt, UK-France to issue an ultimatum to both sides to cease fire and retreat 40 miles from the Canal, and when (as expected) Egypt rejects the ultimatum, the UK and France would invade.

03 Oct 1956 - An Israeli passenger train is attacked near Tul Karem. On the following day, five Israelis are murdered on the road to Beer Sheva. In the wake of this terrorism, Israel informs General Burns that she withdraws cooperation from the Israel-Jordan MAC.
10-11 Oct 1956 - after two Israelis are murdered in Even Yehuda, Israel attacks Qalqilia; 48 Jordanians killed, Israel loses 18; US reaction is extremely hostile to Israel.
15 Oct 1956 - American U2 spy-flights detect signs of mobilization in Israel; the US, however, believes that Israel is about to attack Jordan.

16 Oct 1956 - Two weeks before the Sinai campaign, Eden meets representatives of the French government in Paris, agree to joint Israel-France-UK plan for the Suez.
22 Oct 1956 - Jordan, Syria and Egypt form a joint military command. On the previous day, three Israeli soldiers die as they hit an Egyptian mine in the Negev.
23 Oct 1956 - Talks at Sevres between a delegation headed by Ben-Gurion on the one hand, and the French on the other hand. Ben-Gurion airs many reservations about the plan, including the "pretext strategy". The following day, Ben-Gurion nonetheless approves the plan, and on 26 October the three parties give final consent. Also on 26 October, Israel begins a quite, total mobilization.

27 Oct 1956 - Believing that Israel is preparing to attack Jordan, Eisenhower "advises" Israel to desist.
29 Oct 1956 - Sinai campaign begins. Eisenhower reacts with overt rage.

Posted by Joseph Alexander Norland at June 7, 2005 08:05 AM


This series of 5 articles appeared on Israpundit written by Joseph Alexander Norland. I am printing them as part of a struggle to understand how the United States government has backed the PLO from the beginning and this backing continues to the very present in the Road Map and the Uprooting of Jews from Gaza and Northern Samaria...Felix Quigley June 30, 2005

1. Introduction and summary

This piece reviews Israel-US relations during the Eisenhower administration, January 1953-January 1961. The object is to highlight what has changed and what hasn't, and to derive relevant conclusions. In particular, I will attempt to describe what was wrong with the Eisenhower thinking, the erroneous policy steps that ensued, and what we can learn from these mistakes vis-a-vis the Bush-Sharon situation.

The material presented is based on numerous sources, chief among them being Alteras' monograph, "Eisenhower and Israel":
Alteras, Isaac. Eisenhower and Israel. Tallahassee (Florida): U Press of Florida, 1993
For this reason, page numbers cited below refer to Alteras' work. The responsibility for errors and interpretation rests with me alone.

It is hardly a secret that during the Eisenhower years, the relations between Israel and the US were (to put it mildly) extremely strained. Some contend that both Eisenhower and Dulles harboured a strong anti-Israel streak that manifested itself time an again in Israel-US relations. It is important, therefore, to recognize from the outset that prior to assuming office, both Eisenhower and Dulles were actually helpful to nascent Israel. Eisenhower, for example, was instrumental in ensuring that British and US legislators visited and witnessed the horrors of the Nazi concentration camps [p.29]. He was also helpful to Ben-Gurion in visiting the Displaced Persons (DP) camps after WW II, and in shipping Zionist educational materials from Palestine to these camps [p.29].

Eisenhower soon turned to oppose the birth of Israel for strategic reasons. Thus, prior to the establishment of Israel, Eisenhower was rather opposed to the US supporting the partition resolution of the UN. On the other hand, once Israel became a living fact, Eisenhower made peace with its existence, albeit grudgingly. For example, on 22 July 1951, as NATO's Europe commander, Eisenhower testifies at the senate foreign relations committee that the Middle East [ME] was the most important territory and "we should bring in the arab world on our side".

Dulles was very supportive of Israel even at her birth, when the 1946-47 UN debates were ongoing. Specifically, he supported the UN Partition Plan. When the catastrophic Bernadotte Plan was brought up at the UN on 21 September, 1948, George Marshall, head of the US delegation supported it; Dulles, his deputy, opposed it. On September 28, 1948, Dulles delivered a speech to that effect at the UN [p. 55-56]. This was in sharp contrast to the statement by George Marshall on Sept 21, according to which the US would accept the Bernadotte plan [p.6].
With this in mind, the questions arise: What caused the Eisenhower-Dulles policies to turn anti-Israel, and what are the manifestations that justify this characterization of the administration's Israel policy?

To answer these questions in detail would require an entire tome. To fit the essence into the limited space of a blog article, and to ensure that the statements I make are documented and easily verifiable, I will adopt the method of an annotated timeline, viz., I will provide dates and headlines for the major, relevant events, and add interpretative comments of my own [in italics].

In reading the detailed timelines presented in Parts 2 and 3, one should bear in mind that during the period January 1953 - January 1961, the world saw momentous political developments that had nothing to do with the Middle East (ME), and yet, as will be underscored below, Eisenhower and Dulles seemed to have been utterly fixated on this area and on Israel's "transgressions". A short, selected list of world events that took place during Eisenhower's administration is given in Part 4 of this essay.

The remainder of this Introduction outlines what I consider the main, recurring motifs which characterised the Israel-US relations, 1953-1961. This summary should benefit readers who are not interested in the flood of details that document my theses, as presented in Parts 2 and 3.
The first theme to emphasize is the obsessive fixation with which Eisenhower bludgeoned Israel on the one hand, and the awe-inspiring fortitude with which Ben-Gurion attempted to resist the US. In some aspects, Ben-Gurion was successful, as in the instance of rejecting US pressure to relinquish the Negev or accept refugees. In other instances, especially with regard to the withdrawal from Sinai after the 1956 War, Ben-Gurion was forced to surrender, but at least he put up a noble fight. This is, to my mind, the major difference between the Eisenhower years and the miserable Bush era: the steadfastness of Israel's leaders. This theme and the obvious conclusion it warrants are the most important part of this essay.

The second motif is the constant cycle of Arab aggression against Israel, especially against civilians, followed by Israeli retaliation, followed by condemnation of Israel at the hands of the US and/or the UN. Mostly, this condemnation was accompanied by economic pressure and using the UN (which the US was able to control in that era) to bludgeon Israel. In turn, Israel learnt very quickly that she had no friends to speak of, with the exception of France during the Suez War.

The third motif, one that is related to the foregoing, is the persistent attempt by Israel's Arab neighbours to sabotage Israel's economy, especially when the GOI attempted to develop the land. The water dispute is one example, the Arab boycott is another. The Arabs were quite willing to deprive themselves of the advantages that would accrue from co-operating with Israel, provided the Israelis too were deprived. This point, flowing from the Arab intention to destroy Israel, seems to have eluded Eisenhower.

The fourth motif is the Eisenhower/Dulles perception of Israel as a millstone around the West's neck. Needing the Arab oil for its well-being, and needing to deprive the USSR of control over this oil, the US policy mandated courting the Arabs at all costs, especially by severing the friendly relations with Israel, which prevailed during Truman's administration.

The fifth element is the Eisenhower-Dulles perception of "Zionist pressure" and "internal politics" which they resented quite overtly and publicly. Resisting the voice of the people and their representatives became another Eisenhower obsession. No such resentment was shown when the State Department Arabists and the oil interests lobbied for the Arabs. The achievement of the pro-Israel lobby in somewhat softening the Eisenhower-Dulles hard line on the "unconditional withdrawal" from the Sinai is truly remarkable. Today, Israel's supporters in the US are better organized and much more numerous, especially when one considers the Christian Zionists. But the current Israeli leaders fail to adequately marshal the potential of her supporters.

The sixth thread that characterises the Eisenhower era is the eagerness to clobber his allies - the UK, France and Israel - when the obvious gainer could be no other than the USSR.
Considering that the events documented below take their hue from the Cold War of that era, it is amazing how blind Eisenhower was to the fact that he kept weakening his allies. If removal of European influence in the ME was Eisenhower's objective, he sure triumphed in 1956-7, but at the cost of seeing Europe replaced by the USSR. The conclusion one has to draw from the specific events (as detailed in Parts 2 and 3), which illustrate this motif, is this: the US has proved to be an extremely unreliable ally.

The seventh recurring element to highlight is the fact that Eisenhower-Dulles obdurately refused to recognize facts, or act on such facts. Nasser was quite open and bold in working with the USSR, and in undermining the regimes that were anti-Communist: Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq (prior to the 1958 coup). Yet, the US never ceased in attempting to find favour in Nasser's eyes, using the carrot of arms and aid to the Arabs and a club pointed at Israel. This amazing fact is documented thoroughly in the next two parts of the essay.

The eighths recurring motif is the quest of Israel for US arms and security guarantees, and the concomitant consistent refusal and rejection of Israel by the US. On the one hand, Eisenhower refused to guarantee Israeli security, or freedom of navigation in the Straits of Tiran and the Suez, and on the other hand he refused to provide Israel with arms to defend herself. He also went as far as to constantly warn Israel against using force to press her claim for passage in the Straits and the Suez Canal. The result was that Israel had to survive with her hands tied behind her back, while the Arabs were skillfully playing the US against the USSR and bilking both.

The ninth element to underscore is the way Arabs negotiate. Rather than reject a proposal, they allow the negotiations to drag on, appearing to concede somewhat and agree in principle, only to draw an implied rejection at the last minute. The US negotiations with the Arabs on the Johnston water-sharing plan and on the Alpha Plan advocated by Anderson, are two examples detailed in the following text. The US, however, never tired of these tactics, and continued to negotiate ad nauseam.

The tenth element is one of omission rather than of commission. At no point did I find that Israeli negotiators made the point that the Jews were duped in 1921 when 78% of the land promised to them was removed to create a fiefdom for the Emir Abdullah; nor did Israeli negotiators emphasized that the Jews were duped a second time, when the western part of their homeland was allocated to an Arab state (the UN partition plan). Nor did they make the point that the Arab "refugees" were anything but. In a word, Israel did little to stake out the moral high ground. This is another issue that persists to this day.

Last but not least is the motif of the UN as a source of consistent anti-Israel action. The UN chiefs "on the ground", whether the Canadian Burns or the Danish Bennike, were perpetual sources of anti-Israel propaganda. When they did side with Israel in the Mixed Armistice Committees (MAC's), their support was utterly useless. The same goes for the Secretary General and the UN General Assembly (UNGA). In short, the UN as a deadly enemy of Israel has a very long history.

Finally, a note about the dates given in the timelines of Parts 2 nd 3. I came across several instances in which sources diverged from one another in what should have been a solid fact - dates. In some instances, one-day difference in the recorded date could be attributed to time-zone differential. In other cases the differences boil down to a question of definition. If a given source cites date D for "USSR-Egypt arms deal", then this date may be defined as the date on which (i) an intent was announced, or (ii) negotiations began, or (iii) negotiation were concluded, or (iv) the deal was signed, or (v) the governments ratified the signed agreement, or (vi) arms were actually shipped, or (vii) the delivery arrived. The difference could amount to many months.

In a number of cases I was unable to reconcile the differences among the various sources I used. The conclusion is that the data I present in Parts 2 and 3 should be used with caution, notwithstanding my best efforts to ensure accuracy.
Posted by Joseph Alexander Norland at June 6, 2005 08:06 AM
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