The World: A Meeting Between Friends

At the welcoming ceremony on the sodden south lawn of the White House, President Ford and Israeli Premier Yitzhak Rabin stoically stood bareheaded in the cold rain while a fife-and-drum ensemble dressed in Continental Army uniforms drilled before them. Since Egyptian President Anwar Sadat had been treated to an outdoor reception during his triumphant visit last November, the same courtesy had to be extended to Rabin—rain or shine. "According to Jewish tradition," said Rabin, glancing at the skies, "rain means blessing."

The blessing was at least partly disguised, what with a string of recent defeats at the U.N. for U.S.-Israeli policy and...

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