684A.85/8–2754: Telegram

No. 876
The Chargé in Israel (Russell) to the Department of State1


205. Embtel 192.2 I met Dayan and Eytan at reception yesterday and discussed rather fully possibility of establishing contact between Israel representative and those of Egypt and Jordan to deal with day-to-day border problems on local level. While Eytan continued to appear half-hearted, Dayan vigorously plied me with arguments in favor.

Dayan stated, and Eytan agreed, IG would like as soon as possible, without any formal agreement, to institute practice of area commander (battalion or brigade) on each side designating contact spot on his side of border where opposite number or deputy could conveniently and safely come and make telephone call for immediate meeting. Meetings would be completely informal, without bylaws, minutes, or appeal, for purpose of dealing cooperatively to prevent, or to institute any feasible immediate reparative action in connection with, border violations. While IG believes nature of meetings is such that it would be anomalous to have UN representative present, it would have no objection to such presence at first meetings to facilitate inauguration. With respect Egyptian border, locations might be along Gaza road. Similar arrangements might also be established in Jerusalem and in Hebron area although Dayan believe preferable to start with just one or two places to see how it works. He believes name “local commander agreement” is a little formal but willing to accede to it if insisted upon.

  1. Repeated to Cairo, Amman, and Jerusalem.
  2. Document 869.