Arab-Israeli Deadlock

August 17, 1960

Report Outline
Main Areas of Arab-Israeli Conflict
Causes of the Present Hostility
Attempts to Break the Deadlock
Repercussions in the United States

Main Areas of Arab-Israeli Conflict

Threatened boycotting of Iran by countries be-A longing to the Arab League emphasizes again the pervasive effects and the depth of Arab hostility to Israel. Iran is in trouble with the Arabs because the Shah confirmed to a newspaperman, July 23, that the de facto recognition extended by his country to Israel in March 1950 is still in effect. For acknowledging the existence of a condition that had obtained for 10 years, Iran's monarch was bitterly assailed by President Gamal Abdel Nasser of the United Arab Republic, relations between the U.A.R. and Iran were severed, and the Council of the Arab League was called into special session to consider punitive measures.

At the meeting on Aug. S a representative of the U.A.R. asserted that Iranian recognition of Israel might “destroy the diplomatic blockade imposed by Arab states against Israel.” He called that blockade one of the most effective Arab weapons, for it had kept the Jewish state out of regional organizations established by the United Nations in the Middle East. The U.A.R. feared that if the Moslem states in the region recognized Israel, the Arab weapon would be blunted. However, consideration of measures of political or economic retaliation against Iran was left to be taken up by the Arab foreign ministers at a regular meeting of the Arab League Council scheduled to open at Beirut, Lebanon, on Aug. 22.

Shortly before Arab ire descended on Iran, nine American business corporations and a dozen European and Asian companies dealing with Israel had been added to a blacklist maintained by the Arab League and thus were barred from selling their products in Arab countries. U.S. shipping companies and airlines already had felt the effects of the boycott. It has been suggested that the hard line taken toward Iran represents an effort by Nasser to discourage recognition of Israel by newly independent Cyprus and to discourage further development of friendly intercourse between Israel and independent African countries. In any case, spreading application of the Arab boycott points up the significance of platform pledges made by both American political parties to seek an end to differences between Israel and the Arab states.

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