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Weinberger urges greater US presence in Gulf

By WITH ANALYSIS FROM MONITOR CORRESPONDENTS AROUND THE WORLD, EDITED BY HILARY DEVRIES / March 9, 1981



Washington

Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger said Sunday the United States should increase its military presence in the Persian Gulf region and possibly supply arms to anti-Soviet Afghan rebels. Mr. Weinberger said in an interview on CBS television's "Face the Nation" that the absence of US military forces in the Gulf and Middle East area would be "almost an invitation to the Soviets . . . to believe they could seize the oil fields" that provided petroleum for the US and its allies.

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He said the United States must make it clear to Moscow it would be taking an unacceptable risk if it attempted to re peat its military intervention in Afghanistan in late 1979.