January 21, 2017

1975. Israel Invites Henry Kissinger to Visit the Middle East

Israeli Foreign Minister Yigal Allon Speaks in Washington

From ABC Evening News anchored by Harry Reasoner, January 17, 1975:
HARRY REASONER: Secretary of State Kissinger has accepted, in principle, an invitation to visit Israel as soon as he can to work for another interim agreement between Israel and Egypt. Israeli Foreign Minister Yigal Allon made the announcement in Washington this afternoon following a meeting with Kissinger. ABC's Bill Downs reports.

BILL DOWNS: Much of Foreign Minister Allon's wind-up news conference dealt with the possibility of getting Egypt to the negotiating table, implying that any new round of Secretary Kissinger's personal diplomacy would be most effective in Cairo.

YIGAL ALLON: Since President Sadat himself on American television declared, two weeks ago I think, that he was ready to negotiate a second step, I can safely say that we are looking forward to Egyptians' readiness to negotiate with us a second step.

DOWNS: On this visit to the United States, Allon said that some Americans have expressed concern the US might sell out Israel like the British and French sold out the Czechs at Munich before World War II. He had a reply to that.

ALLON: President Ford is not Chamberlain. And President Sadat—although he expresses his hatred for Israel quite frequently, unfortunately—nevertheless, he is not a Hitler. Israel is not Czechoslovakia. And the American people will never go Munich. Thank you.

DOWNS: The betting here in Washington is that Secretary Kissinger will be winging his way back to the Middle East before the middle of March.

Bill Downs, ABC News Washington.