974.731/1–2451: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in Israel 1


306. Israel Amb Eban Jan 29 had hour-long talk with McGhee. Kollek and Keren also present. Eban reviewed Israel situation re defense, supplies, and peace. Israel position these matters already known to you.

In addition Eban discussed Egypt “blockade” Suez Canal and expressed hope Dept wld support Israel view that Egypt–Israel MAC competent handle Israel complaint against Suez Canal restrictions. McGhee replied we agreed Israel view and informally would so advise UN secretariat, (urtel 429 Jan 24).2

McGhee then referred question Israel seizure Nov 23, 1950, of $6,500 worth US aircraft parts destined Syria and pointed out seeming inconsistency Israel position re “blockade” and fact of seizure aircraft parts. Israelis appeared embarrassed and promised tel immed FonOff recommending release aircraft parts to Syria.

Emb may wish inform Bendor Dept’s position re “blockade” and take similar position re aircraft parts.3

  1. Telegram drafted by Mr. Waldo. Repeated telegraphically to Cairo, Damascus, and Jerusalem, and by air pouch to London.
  2. Not printed. In telegram 1101 from New York, February 1, the U.S. Mission to the United Nations in part indicated that the British Delegation to the United Nations was also preparing to inform the United Nations Secretariat of its view that the Egypt–Israel MAC was competent to handle this question. (974.5301/2–151)
  3. Documents in file 483.118 for 1951 indicate that at least partly as a result of American representations the Israeli authorities by April 15 released the parts in question for shipment back to the United States after having refused to allow their shipment to a nearby non-Arab port (for transshipment to Beirut).