14. Editorial Note

During his conversation with President Nasser on January 9, Ambassador Hare, acting under instructions transmitted in telegram 2169 to Cairo, January 3 (Department of State, Central Files, 874.411/1–357), raised the subject of the treatment of Jews in Egypt. Nasser responded by seeking to minimize the importance of the question and spoke of the small number who were actually deported and the relaxation of a previous directive to sequester Jewish property. Hare emphasized that reports indicating that pressure was being exerted on stateless Jews to leave was causing considerable concern in the United States and in Congress. Hare later spoke with the Egyptian Minister of the Interior, Zakaria Mohieddin, who advised that out of 7,000 stateless Jews in Egypt, 2,000 had left Egypt, and that their departure was mainly a result of the atmosphere which had prevailed during the [Page 21]days following the outbreak of hostilities. Mohieddin maintained that there were no general orders requiring stateless Jews to leave the country and none were being issued. Those ordered from the country had been found guilty of acts against interests of the state or had connections with Israel which made them a security risk. He added that a total of 300 Egyptian and stateless Jews had been interned; 21 stateless and 77 Egyptian Jews continued to be held for security reasons. After reporting Mohieddin’s assertions, Hare commented: “Unfortunately Zakaria’s reasonableness and assurances only partly reflected in actual developments.” That week, according to Hare, a number of stateless Jews had been advised by the police that they must leave the country at the earliest opportunity, and there were also reports of Jews being fired from their jobs and of Jewish businessmen having difficulty obtaining needed permits for their businesses. (Ibid., 874.411/1–1157)