Harold Robinson's "double standard" charge against Jordan's past claim to the West Bank is wrong {Free for All, June 23}. A double-standard yardstick applies only when the principles behind the actions are equal, which they are not in this case. Compare the facts.

Jordan's 1948 military action was intended to help the Palestinians defend their West Bank homeland against Israeli takeover. The 1950 union between Jordan and the West Bank and Gaza Strip did not come about through "force of arms"; it was decided upon by the Palestinians themselves through a referendum. Until Israel's 1967 occupation, the Palestinians lived under Jordan's protection by choice, enjoying full, equal rights as Jordanian citizens.

In 1988, again in response to Palestinian wishes, Jordan severed its administrative and legal ties with the West Bank and Gaza Strip and relinquished any prior claim to those territories.

Israel, on the other hand, has perpetuated a rigidly imposed military occupation on the territories since 1967. For 23 years, it has been holding the Palestinian people and their lands in captivity, in violation of their human and national rights under international law. Further, through the building of Jewish settlements on Palestinian land, Israel reveals its determination to lay permanent claim to the occupied territories and eventually to annex them.

The Palestinian uprising, now in its third year, gives clear evidence of how desperate and justified the Palestinian cry for freedom is.

-- Helen Khal