SEN. LOWELL WEICKER (R.-Conn.) gave a disgusting speech before a policy conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee Monday night. Yes, we know "disgusting" is a strong word. It is precisely the word we want. Mr. Weicker took the occasion to crank up and enflame his audience's anxieties about American policy toward Israel, confiding all sorts of nonsence to them about how the administration was not dealing with Israel in good faith and about how it cared not one whit for Israel's well-being, but was prepared to throw that embattled nation to the wolves.
And who turned out to be the heavy of this reckless fantasy? Zbigniew Brzezinski, the president's national security adviser. In fact, Sen. Weicker came about as close as he could without actually saying it to suggesting that Mr. Brzezinski is anti-Semitic and even temperamentally of a cast of mind reminiscent of the Naziz. Thus:
When people start talking about world over, I have a chilling sense of deja vu. The vision of a world order always seems to require that certain groups be trimmed off in the interests of orderliness and a neat package. Mr. Brzezinski has said this world-order process in the Middle East must be a zig-zag effort because supporters of Israel in America will object to it. And the supporters of Israel in America, according to Brzezinski, are American Jews. It must follow, in his view, that if this vision of a new world order is thwarted in the present cockpit of world conflict, it will be because of American Jews and because of Israel. We know from history that time and again, when national leaders ran into difficulties, they found it convenient to blame their problems on the Jews. And we know what were the results. If there is a meaningful distinction between those historical proclivities and the signals which Brzezinski is sending today, I don't know what it is.
If Mr. Wiecker in fact is unable to distinguish between the murderous, racist policies under which Jews have suffered so excruciatingly in the past and the Carter administration's efforts to negotiate a fair and stable peace in the Middle East, then he is telling us more about his own astonishing failings than anything else. But we think he does know better and that this was not evidence of a failure of intelligence so much as of a reckless excess of reelection campaigning.
Still, some small good did come out of the evening, or at least the Weicker damage was in part redeemed by the reactions of two other men. Sen. Daniel P. Moynihan (D-N.Y.), following Sen Weicker as a speaker, quickly rose to the defense of Mr. Brzezinski's integrity. And White House counsel Robert Lipshutz issued a statement in which he characterized the Weicker speech as an "attempt to prey upon the deep emotions of the Jewish people" and "a disservice to the United States, to the State of Israel and the cause of peace." We think Mr. Lipshutz has it just right.