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Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, March 18, 1962, Image 15

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045462/1962-03-18/ed-1/seq-15/

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Israeli-Syrian Battle
Halted by U.N. Truce
TEL AVIV, Israel. Mar. 17 (AP).—A United Nations cease
fire early today halted the hottest frontier battle in two years
between Syria and Israel. Both sides had thrown in artillery
and warplanes along the Sea of Galilee and both claimed victory.
As the fighting raged, two Israeli planes dropped bombs
on northern Jordan near the scene of the battle, a Jordanian I
military spokesman said in Am
man. Authorities in Jordan an
nounced they had offered mili
tary support to Syria against
Israel—“ The common enemy.”
Syria accused Israel of
treachery and aggression. Mrs.
Golda Meir, Israel’s foreign
minister, declared, "We had no ■
alternative but to take action
against the Syrian military [
positions from which firing;
was directed at Israeli fisher-'
men and police boats.”
Both Claim Victory
An Israeli army spokesman
said units of Israel’s army
stormed a Syrian stronghold,
on the east coast of the Sea of
Galilee, blew up its fortifi
cations and killed 30 Syrians at
a cost of 5 Israelis dead and;
10 wounded.
Syria claimed the Israelis i
were repulsed with the loss of ;
at least 200 soldiers and four I
tanks. The Syrians said artil
lery set ablaze the base from
which the attack was launched, j
Syrian casualties were given
as one dead and five wounded.
The night attack came after
several days of clashes on the
waters of the Sea of Galilee
in which each side had accused
the other of provoking inci
dents involving gunboats and
fishermen.
An Israeli army spokesman
said three columns of troops,
their strength not disclosed,
launched the attack northward
up the east coast of the Sea
of Galilee.
Israeli territory runs about;
halfway up the east coast and
then pinches off into territory;
controlled by Syria. Israel
claims the Sea of Galilee is all
Israeli.
The objective was a village
known as Northern Nukev
(Nugeib), which the spokesman
said had been converted into a
stronghold with trenches, shel
ters and bunkers. It was from
Northern Nukev, he charged,
that Syrian guns had been at
tacking Israeli fishermen in
the sea.
The spokesman estimated
that Northern Nukev was man
ned by about 100 Syrians when
the three columns struck. He
said many soldiers were seen
fleeing, the positions were cap
tured and the bunkers blown
up before the Israelis retired.
In Damascus, a Syrian army
spokesman said the Israelis at
tacked from Ein Gev, a settle
ment south of Northern Nukev.
He said the Syrians “furiously
and heroically resisted the en
emy attackers” and drove them
back. Then Syrian artillery
opened up on Israeli units in
side Eln Gev and “the enemy
was forced to flee,” he added.
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The Syrian spokesman said
I the Israelis then attacked Arab
[villages in the adjacent hills
with artillery and warplanes.'
' but the Syrian air force inter
. vened, forced the Israeli planes
i[ to run and then dominated the;
i air space. He said that “the
enemy left behind four tanks;
[and eight vehicles, four of
[ which are still ablaze.”
The Israeli spokesman de
nied that any tanks engaged
[in the attack. He said four
troop-carrying trucks were
damaged by land mines and
since they were useless, were
[blown up by the Israelis.
The Israeli spokesman also
gave a different version of the
air battle and the events
around Ein Gev. He said Ein
Gev was strictly a civilian set
tlement and was shelled by four
Syrian field artillery batteries
after the U. N. truce supervis
ors had called for a cease-fire
at 2:15 a.m.
He said Israeli planes then
went into action and silenced
the batteries, shelling Ein Gev
■ and Poria, another village near
. the seacoast. He declined to
say how many Israeli planes
were in action. When told Syria
said two Israeli planes were
involved, he replied that only
one Syrian plane was sighted
and it was a Soviet-built MIG
-17 jet. He also asserted thatr
captured arms and ammunition
also were of Russian make,
away from the UAR.
I The U. N. truce headquarters
announced a cease-fire finally
was reached about 5 a.m.
—————————..
Mansfield Lists
Chalk Talks
Inspector Dick Mansfield, di
rector of The Star’s School
Safety Program, will give his
cartoon safety chalk-talks at
the following District of Co
lumbia schools this week:
Tomorrow, Carver School,
[9:15 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.
Tuesday, Congress Heights
School, 9:15 a.m.
Wednesday, Logan School,
9:15 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.
Thursday. Stanton School,
9:15 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.
Friday, Nalle School, 9:15
a.m. and 11:15 a m.
McNAMARA
Continued From Page A-l
in the controversy over the
2,000- mile- an- hour B-70
bomber, why is it overlooked
that the aircraft could be
knocked down at its 70,000-
foot ceiling by missiles, such
as the Army’s Nike-Hercules?
“Oh,” said Mr. McNamara,
“the Air Force has already con
ceded that it can’t live over
the target. That is why it was
changed.” This was a reference
to the new concept of the
projected plane as a recon
naissance-strike bomber.
Mr. McNamara has said the
technical systems which would
enable this aircraft to detect
targets of opportunity and then
deliver missiles against them
from a distance just haven’t
been developed yet—and are
unlikely to be for some time.
[ He is opposed to full-scale pro
duction of the plane at this
, time, despite congressional pres
sures to go ahead.
There have been reports that
the Russians have made con
siderable progress in develop
ing an anti-missile missile; is
that true?
Mr. McNamara said the re
cent Soviet high-altitude nu
clear tests undoubtedly “were
tests associated with the tech
niques of an anti-missle mis
sile, but there is no evidence
that they have succeeded in
producing a satisfactory or ef
fective system. I doubt if they
are as far advanced as our [
Nike-Zeus.”
Fear of Third Power
But back to the main points:
There are two great nuclear
powers in the world, the United
States and Russia, capable of
mounting large-scale nuclear
attacks.
A question which has long
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troubled military men Is what
would happen if they dumped
all their nuclear weapons on
each other, thus leaving a
third power, such as Red China,
unharmed.
Strategists have long argued
.over whether the possession of
an intact nuclear arsenal by a
third power would deny the
two major nations the oppor
tunity to concentrate resources
;and rebuild except on '.hat
third power’s terms.
Could the United States ab-'
sbrb a nuclear strike, deliver a
counterblow against the Soviet
Union and still have enought
strength left to counter third
power blackmail?
“Yes,” said Mr. McNamara.
"This implies an overwhelm
ing strength. Do we have
enough to leave at home to
counter a third power?”
Mr. McNamara: "We do.”
45% Stronger Force
In discussing the rapid in
crease In the Nation's non-nu
clear war capabilities. Mr. Nc-
Namara said that by increasing
the Army to 16 combat-ready
divisions, augmenting the
strength of the three-division
Marine Corps and adding as
sorted brigades and regiments,
there has been an effective 45
per cent increase in strength of
conventional forces.
When Mr. McNamara took
office 14 months ago, the army
had 14 divisions, 11 of them
were classed as combat-fit.
All told, the conventional war
!■ strength of the United States
I now adds up to about 21. pos
i sibly 22, combat-ready divisions,
i Could this force meet crises
. on two fronts without forcing
this Nation into partial mobil
ization such as it went through
iat tire time of the last Berlin
|Laos crises?
’ “I think so.” said Mr. Mc-[
Namara.
The Secretary declined to
say for the record the extent of
; United States personnel in
volved in South Viet Nam
Asked whether he thought mili
[tary force alone could defeat
; the Communists in that area,
he replied:
I "Definitely not. Military op-
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erations must be accompanied
by economic and political ac-l
; tion as well. But economic andi
I I
po itical action must be based;
on a stable military situation.;
Villages terrorized by the Viet |
Cong cannot carry out re-[
forms.”
“Mr. Secretary, you have said [
we must be prepared to defend
the outposts of freedom in the
world, and coupled this with
the statement that our allies
have great and growing
strength. Where are our allies
in this defense of the outposts
of freedom?”
Mr. McNamara replied: “The
combat-ready divisions of
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THE SUNDAY STAR
Washington, D. C., March It, 1962
■NATO have increased 25 per,
icent since December (from 21
Ito 26) and, what is more im-,
portant, the manning level of
these divisions has been in-!
; creased.”
Where have these extra di-'
visions come from? “Primarily I
from the Germans. The French 1
have brought up two divisions."
He added that "suprisingly,
the smaller nations of the alli
ance have increased their con
tributions, especially the Neth
erlands.”
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A-15

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