JERUSALEM -- Prime Minister Menachem Begin launched a new attack on Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, saying the West German leader had no right to advocate a Palestinian state and Germany will never purge 'its guilt' for the holocaust.
In a thumping, two-hour speech at a Likud coalition convention, Begin said he would not retract 'a single word' from his scathing attack last week on Schmidt that was triggered by the chancellor's statement that Palestinians had a 'moral right' to self-determination.
'You have no moral right to tell the prime minister of Israel to create a Palestinian state and you never will,' Begin said. 'To the end of generations, Germany will not be rid of its guilt.'
'If hundreds or thousands of (German tourists) decide not to visit Israel because of my remarks, let them sit at home,' Begin said.
Schmidt's comments of a 'moral right' for Palestinian self-determination were made after the West German leader visited Saudi Arabia. He stressed during the trip that West Germany could not sell the Saudis Leopard tanks.
In reaction to Schmidt's statement, Begin angrily denounced the German leader last Thursday, Israel's 33rd Independence Day anniversary.
'He (Schmidt) never broke his oath to the Fuhrer, Adolf HItler,' Begin said. 'He fought on the Eastern Front. I don't know what he did on the East front.'
Schmidt in a restrained response Thurday said, 'I do not want to add anything because I am ware of the special historical and moral quality of German-Israeli relations.'
He called relations with the two nations 'good and unusually close.'
Earlier, a West German government spokesman called Begin's accusations 'mistaken and insulting.' West German newspapers called the Israeli leader's attacks 'unjustified and inexcusable.'
Begin, speaking Sunday six weeks before the Israeli elections, also issued a warning to neo-Nazis in Germany who have sent threats of violence against Israeli officials.
'If you raise a hand against even one Jew,it is possible we'll catch you just like we caught (Adolf) Eichmann,' Begin said. 'These are not the 30's or 40's.'
Eichmann was captured in Argentina by Israeli agents in 1961 and was brought to trial in Israel, He was found guilty of transporting Jews to Nazi death camps during World War II and hanged in 1962.