60. U.S. not obligated to grant loan

The thrust of Steve Fredman's letter of October 23, "Israel deserves our help," makes me wonder whether he is just missing the point or he is missing it intentionally.

The argument he presents is that "Israel anticipates the absorption of 1 million Soviet and Ethiopian Jews ... the equivalent of the United States absorbing the entire population of France." Well, Israel, if it feels inclined, can go ahead and absorb the equivalent of the entire population of Europe. For all I know, that doesn't make it an American problem.

Furthermore, he points out that an "absorption of that scale will give rise to great hardships unless jobs are created and housing is provided." This is not an American problem either. We should rather worry about creating jobs for American jobless and providing housing for American homeless.

To justify American involvement in the absorption business, he refers to Israel as a country "that has consistently stood with the United States in the United Nations." How ironic! Are we talking about the same United Nations that Israel doesn't want to see involved in the peace process?

As for the loan that Israel will borrow from the private banks, he maintains that "the guarantees will not reduce the money available to meet U.S. domestic needs." This is not true. The Credit Reform Act passed a year ago to reduce the federal deficit took effect October 1 of this year. It requires that the percentage of the loan guarantee set aside to cover possible default must be included in the federal budget, a move that will certainly affect federal spending limits unless Congress cuts something else. The trade-off could very well be in much-needed domestic programs

November 5, 1992