In December 1974, 71 members of the U.S.
Senate signed a letter to President Ford expressing concern over United Nations
actions on the The Palestine Liberation Organization
, calling them a direct threat to American foreign policy
which must be met vigorously and promptly. The Senators also condemned
the UNESCO decisions and called on the U.S. government to take the lead
in organizing our friends and allies to resist political and economic
blackmailing in the future. Text of the letter follows:
Dear Mr. President:
In writing to you about recent developments in the
Middle East, we wish to reaffirm the commitment to the survival and
integrity of the state of Israel that has been the bipartisan basis of
American policy over 26 years and under five administrations.
We believe that the prominence of the Palestine
Liberation Organization at the Rabat Conference and at the United Nations
General Assembly poses a direct threat to American Foreign policy which
must be met vigorously and promptly. Mr. Arafat's own statements from the
rostrum of the United Nations strip away any illusions about the values and
mentality which dominate the PLO. His espousal of terrorism and his
repeated calls for the destruction of Israel as a Jewish homeland must be
resolutely opposed by the United States in order to make progress toward a
genuine peace in the Middle East.
We are deeply disturbed by the United Nations vote to
give recognition to the PLO and by the spectacle of Western cynicism,
apathy and disunity. The action of the General Assembly to limit Israel's
right to reply is a serious departure from the original principles of the
United Nations. Moreover, the decision by UNESCO to withhold assistance to
Israel is a shameful example of the transformation of that international
humanitarian organization into a political weapon.
These recent events dramatize the need for the United
States to take the lead in organizing our friends and allies to resist
political and economic blackmail in the future. We do not believe that a
policy of appeasement will be any more successful now than it proved to be
in Europe in the 1930's because we confront an appetite which grows on what
it is fed.
We therefore urge you to initiate a comprehensive and
coordinated diplomatic response that will unite our friends and allies in
meeting these new challenges to peace in the Middle East.
We urge that you reiterate our nation's long-standing
commitment to Israel's security by a policy of continued military supplies
and diplomatic and economic support. In doing so, you will be acting in the
best interests of the United States and with the support of the Congress
and the American people.