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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - April 8, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta Nixon pinned to the wall- by Commies Hy HiMKIM) MOKUISON Cnniulinn I'rc-bS Stuff WrUcr Tlic depth ol N'orlh Vietnam's successful Ilirnst into South Vietnamese tcrritoiy may dampen President Nixon's negotiating power with China and the Soviet Union and force him into a sharp reappraisal of his Asiaji policy. In effect, the Communists liave pinned him to a political wall. The entire U.S. strategy of training Ihe Soutli Vietnamese to Irold (lie (p'ound under an Ameii- can aerial umbrella has licen challenged and perhaps rven sh.itlcred hy the Communist thrust. It has raised the old question of whether the South Vietnamese will ever be capable of defending their country without American military aid. When Nixon made his visit to Peking, the conclus- ion drawn hy many observers was ttiat the Chinese were anxious to reduce Sino-American tensions and per- haps use Nixon as a bargaining lever against Soviet pressures and military power. There was new hope that the visit might usher in fln era of peace. Certainly it seemed Nixon was ndorned with ndried world prestige and influence that would strengthen his position in his talks with Soviet leaders next month. Hot issue 111 U.S. Unrest at home had clearly indicated that the Vietnam war had become increasingly unpopular the American public. IL undoubtedly contributed to the retirement of former president Lyndon Johnson and the presidential election defeat of his heir, Hubert Hum- phrey. Nixon's own popularity sccmoj to rise with his decision to withdraw Ihe hulk of American ground forces in South Vietnam liirough (he so-called "Viet- nHmizalion" program which relied largely on confi- dence thai well-trained South Vietnamese troops could hnld (he ground. Perhaps fhp White House linked with this strategy was that the two Asian super-powers probably want to reduce Asian tensions because of the continu- ing grave differences between Moscow and Peking. In (he wake of the new North Vietnam offensive, it appears that the Communists have concluded Lhal Nixon is in a pailicularly vulnerable position. Jf ha tries to reverse his policy on troops hy rushing more American forces into the battlefield, he may find him- self in political difficulties at home during this presi- dential election year. Ant] if he decides, instead, to maintain the existing policy of relying on South Vietnamese ground forces, it is likely Ihat the southern defences may gradually be dcmulisliL'd, despite U.S. aerial bombardment. Tor Nixon, the most desperate leM is whether the .South Vietnamese can mount an effective counter-thrust. A failure at (.his stage may weigh heavily on his political future. Sadat tries to cover up for failure By UAIIHY BlilUUT CAP) Kgypt's break In diplomatic relations Jordan is an allompt by President Sadat lo divert nltenlion from his failure to make Rood on his promise to get the Sinai Desert bnck by the end of 1071 or RO to with Israel. The Egyptian lender lold a spreial session of the guerrilla dominated J'alcslinc National Council in Cairo Thursday night Ihat King Hussein's plan to cre- ate a Palestinian stale is a bolrayal of the Arab cause anil Kgypt had no choice but to brealt relalioiis. told the wildly-cheering crowd that Egypt is holding wide consultations lo bring about joint Arsilj action against King Hussein's deviation from Aral) unity." He Migtic'.slecl Israel's deputy premier, Yiva) Allnn, had a role in Ihe king's aclion. There have, been numerous reports, repeatedly de- nird by belli sides, of meetings between Hussein and Allnn, wlio suggested a peace settlement, with Jordan similar tn the. one (he monarch proposed March 15. Sadat's move could threaten the Hashemite king- dom's economic future and its air links wilh Europe. Left 'one route When .Syria clo.sfd il.s air spjicc lo Jordan last .Hib, the only practical air route left was over Efjyp- liitn lei-ritoiy after a detour around Israeli held Sinai. -Syrin rerrnlly c.isecl rr.slrirtinns on nvprlanrJ iraffic, but Sadnt's at'liun may force it and neighbor- iiit; to lighten Ibcm ajiain. Iraq closnf it.s horrlnrs and air space last year, hut stopper! slioit of breaking relations. Later it rropcnixl its to Jordan. The Egyptian move loft Jordan wilh only one ally flinmiR ifp Arab Snudi which along null Mm lulled hns brm keeping Jordan afloat re An Israeli radio comincntary on Sadat's speech R.iid his decision In ini-uk iriiiiiuns tiin noi mean much because Jordan lias bcrcn isolalccl from much of Iho Arab uorltl