Sadat Comes to Jerusalem - History

Sadat Comes to Jerusalem - History


We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.

In November, Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, arrived in Lod Airport, becoming the first Arab leader to visit Israel. Sadat's visit served to break the psychological barrier that had seemed to prevent Arab leaders from making peace with Israel. During the course of his visit, Sadat visited Yad Vashem (Israel's Holocaust Memorial), the Mosque of Omar, and addressed the Knesset (Israel's Parliament). Sadat's visit marked the beginning of a process that finally ended the 30-year war between Israel and Egypt.

Anwar Sadat

Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article.

Anwar Sadat, in full Muhammad Anwar el-Sadat, Sadat also spelled Sādāt, el-Sadat, or al-Sadat, (born December 25, 1918, Mīt Abū al-Kawm, Al-Minūfiyyah governorate, Egypt—died October 6, 1981, Cairo), Egyptian army officer and politician who was president of Egypt from 1970 until his assassination in 1981. He initiated serious peace negotiations with Israel, an achievement for which he shared the 1978 Nobel Prize for Peace with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. Under their leadership, Egypt and Israel made peace with each other in 1979.

Sadat graduated from the Cairo Military Academy in 1938. During World War II he plotted to expel the British from Egypt with the help of the Germans. The British arrested and imprisoned him in 1942, but he escaped two years later. In 1946 Sadat was arrested after being implicated in the assassination of pro-British minister Amin Othman he was imprisoned until his acquittal in 1948. In 1950 he joined Gamal Abdel Nasser’s Free Officers organization he participated in its armed coup against the Egyptian monarchy in 1952 and supported Nasser’s election to the presidency in 1956. Sadat held various high offices that led to his serving in the vice presidency (1964–66, 1969–70). He became acting president upon Nasser’s death, on September 28, 1970, and was elected president in a plebiscite on October 15.

Sadat’s domestic and foreign policies were partly a reaction against those of Nasser and reflected Sadat’s efforts to emerge from his predecessor’s shadow. One of Sadat’s most important domestic initiatives was the open-door policy known as infitāḥ (Arabic: “opening”), a program of dramatic economic change that included decentralization and diversification of the economy as well as efforts to attract trade and foreign investment. Sadat’s efforts to liberalize the economy came at significant cost, including high inflation and an uneven distribution of wealth, deepening inequality and leading to discontent that would later contribute to food riots in January 1977.

It was in foreign affairs that Sadat made his most dramatic efforts. Feeling that the Soviet Union gave him inadequate support in Egypt’s continuing confrontation with Israel, he expelled thousands of Soviet technicians and advisers from the country in 1972. In addition, Egyptian peace overtures toward Israel were initiated early in Sadat’s presidency, when he made known his willingness to reach a peaceful settlement if Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula (captured by that country in the Six-Day [June] War of 1967). Following the failure of this initiative, Sadat launched a military attack in coordination with Syria to retake the territory, sparking the Arab-Israeli war of October 1973. The Egyptian army achieved a tactical surprise in its October 6 attack on the seemingly impenetrable Israeli fortifications along the east bank of the Suez Canal, and, though Israel staved off any advance by Egypt to recapture the Sinai Peninsula, it sustained heavy casualties and loss of military equipment. Sadat emerged from the war with greatly enhanced prestige as the first Arab leader to have actually retaken some territory from Israel. (See Arab-Israeli wars.)

After the war, Sadat worked toward peace in the Middle East. He made a historic visit to Israel (November 19–20, 1977), during which he traveled to Jerusalem to place his plan for a peace settlement before the Israeli Knesset (parliament). This initiated a series of diplomatic efforts that Sadat continued despite strong opposition from most of the Arab world and the Soviet Union. U.S. Pres. Jimmy Carter mediated the negotiations between Sadat and Begin that resulted in the Camp David Accords (September 17, 1978), a preliminary peace agreement between Egypt and Israel. Sadat and Begin were awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1978, and their continued political negotiations resulted in the signing on March 26, 1979, of a treaty of peace between Egypt and Israel—the first between the latter and any Arab country.

While Sadat’s popularity rose in the West, it fell dramatically in Egypt because of internal opposition to the treaty, a worsening economic crisis, and Sadat’s suppression of the resulting public dissent. In September 1981 he ordered a massive police strike against his opponents, jailing more than 1,500 people from across the political spectrum. The following month Sadat was assassinated by members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad during the Armed Forces Day military parade commemorating the Arab-Israeli war of October 1973.

Sadat’s autobiography, In Search of Identity, was published in 1978.

The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica This article was most recently revised and updated by Adam Zeidan, Assistant Editor.


JERUSALEM ISSUE AGAIN COMES UP AS A SADAT-BEGIN MEETING NEARS

With only four days remaining before the meeting of Egyptian and Israeli leaders in Sinai, the touchy issue of Jerusalem has again clouded relations between the two countries.

In a message to the Cairo-based League of Arab and Islamic Peoples, President Anwar el-Sadat reaffirmed Cairo's support of the Palestinian people's 'ɾternal, national and religious rights'' to Jerusalem.

Mr. Sadat also said that it was unjust to have the city ''tarnished by occupation'' and urged Moslems everywhere ''to cooperate so that the banners of freedom, justice and peace will be raised over Jerusalem.''

Some Want to Cancel Meeting

Reacting to the speech, hard-liners said that Prime Minister Menachem Begin should cancel Thursday's meeting and remain in Jerusalem with his Cabinet to reappraise the decision to complete the evacuation of Sinai by April in accordance with the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty.

But ministers at the Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem this morning decided on a low-key reaction. Emerging from the meeting, Prime Minister Begin somberly read a communique restating Israel's position that ''Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, one city, indivisible.''

The communique added that Israeli law in force since the 1967 war when Israeli forces captured East Jerusalem from Jordanian forces had assured free access to holy places by members of all religions. Subject Isn't On the Agenda

Mr. Begin declined to expand on the Cabinet statement, but Deputy Prime Minister Yigael Yadin said that since President Sadat's first visit to Jerusalem officials had agreed to disagree on Jerusalem, one of the most emotional issues dividing the two countries.

He said the subject was not on the agenda for Thursday's meeting, which will deal with regional problems. The Cabinet meeting today dealt with the forthcoming meeting, and top army and air force officers carried maps into the Cabinet session, suggesting that the ministers also discussed the missile crisis with Syria.

A tentative timetable for Thursday's meeting shows that the two leaders will spend six hours together. The schedule also provides for a state reception at Ofira airport, lunch and a tour of the area at the southern tip of the peninsula where the Israelis have developed naval facilities and a holiday resort area. ---- Sadat Vows Fidelity to Treaty

CAIRO, May 31 (AP) - Despite vocal clashes over Jerusalem, President Anwar el-Sadat told visiting Israeli legislators today that there would be no turning back ''under any circumstances'' from the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty.

He told a delegation from the Israeli Parliament that all differences between the two nations could be resolved, according to Cairo's Middle East News Agency.

Mr. Sadat told the Israeli delegation during the meeting in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria that the Jerusalem issue had to be resolved in a manner ''satisfactory to the claims of Christians, Jews and Moslems, all of whom consider it a holy city.''


The ‘Peace Process’: A Short History

With the Israeli-Palestinian conflict arguably no closer to being resolved than it was a decade ago, one has to wonder: Has the much-vaunted “peace process,” hailed by U.S. presidents from both parties, become a charade? The phrase’s long history suggests that there’s been a lot more process than peace. Now, as Arab uprisings transform the Middle East and Israelis and Palestinians go their separate ways, it may be time to pick a new buzzword: stalemate. –Uri Friedman

1967
After the Six-Day War, U.N. Security Council Resolution 242 calls for Israel to withdraw from occupied territories in exchange for the end of hostilities and respect for the sovereignty of all states in the area. The imprecise language neuters the resolution, but the land-for-peace formula will inform — or haunt — peace efforts thereafter.

1973
Egypt and Syria launch coordinated surprise attacks on Israel in Sinai and the Golan Heights on Yom Kippur. The U.S.-Soviet brinkmanship over the war and the Arab oil embargo highlight the conflict’s geopolitical dimensions, and the United States devotes more diplomatic muscle to resolving it.

1973-1975
In what the media dub “shuttle diplomacy,” U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger holds bilateral talks with the Yom Kippur War belligerents, helping defuse the immediate crisis. Kissinger and his advisors refer to these diplomatic efforts as a “negotiating process” and then, as the political climate in the region defrosts, a “peace process.” The process stalls as U.S. President Richard Nixon resigns and Six-Day War hero Yitzhak Rabin assumes power in Israel.

1974
Arab leaders recognize the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) as the “sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people,” transforming the Palestinian question from one of refugee rights into one of nationalist aspirations. “I have come bearing an olive branch and a freedom fighter’s gun,” PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat informs the U.N. General Assembly a month later. “Do not let the olive branch fall from my hand.”

1975
An influential Brookings Institution study breaks with Kissinger’s incremental peace process, advocating a “comprehensive” Arab-Israeli settlement that would include Israel’s withdrawing to roughly its pre-1967 borders and support of Palestinian self-determination in return for diplomatic recognition and peace with its Arab neighbors.

1977
U.S. President Jimmy Carter brings several authors of the Brookings report into his administration and resolves to pursue a more ambitious peace process, surprising even his closest advisors by openly calling for a Palestinian “homeland.” Israel’s Menachem Begin and Egypt’s Anwar Sadat express an appetite for peace, and Sadat becomes the first Arab leader to visit Israel.

1978-1979
Sadat and Begin meet with Carter, producing the Camp David Accords and, a year later, an Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty in which Egypt recognizes Israel and Israel withdraws from Sinai. The treaty invites Israel’s other neighbors to “join the peace process with Israel.” No takers.

1982
After Sadat’s assassination and Israeli attacks on the PLO in Lebanon, U.S. President Ronald Reagan calls for a “fresh start,” urging Jordan to work with the Palestinians to achieve self-government. The goal goes unrealized.

1985
Dennis Ross, who would advise five U.S. presidents on the Middle East, argues that the United States should cautiously facilitate diplomacy in the region “while patiently awaiting real movement from the local parties.”

1987
Sheikh Ahmed Yassin founds Hamas amid the eruption of the First Intifada, a Palestinian uprising against Israeli control of the West Bank and Gaza. The group’s 1988 charter calls for Israel’s destruction and the creation of an Islamist Palestinian state through violent jihad.

1991
Emboldened by success in the Gulf War, U.S. President George H.W. Bush co-sponsors, with the Soviet Union, a conference in Madrid between Israel and Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and the Palestinians, who meet with Israeli negotiators for the first time. The dialogue achieves little, but it creates a long-missing framework for talks.

1993-1994
Secret Israel-PLO talks in Norway yield the first deal between the two sides, the Oslo Accords. They recognize one another and chart a five-year plan for Israel to cede control of the territories to a new Palestinian Authority and Palestinian leaders to crack down on terrorism before a final peace agreement. Rabin and Jordan’s King Hussein sign another peace treaty a year later.

1995
Jewish extremist Yigal Amir assassinates Rabin, who in his second term had become a strong advocate of a two-state solution. The Oslo peace process sputters.

2000
U.S. President Bill Clinton convenes Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak at Camp David to address Oslo’s thorniest issues: borders, security, settlements, refugees, and Jerusalem. But the talks collapse and the Second Intifada explodes in violence.

2001
A May report by former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell warns that the “greatest danger” in the Mideast is that “the culture of peace, nurtured over the previous decade, is being shattered.” After the 9/11 attacks, President George W. Bush makes no mention of the peace process in his 2002 State of the Union address.

2002-2003
As the United States builds a coalition to go to war in Iraq, Bush becomes the first U.S. president to call explicitly for an independent Palestinian state. The Saudis present an Arab League-endorsed peace plan, and the so-called Quartet — the United States, European Union, Russia, and United Nations — unveils a “road map” for peace that puts security ahead of a political agreement.

2007
With pessimism reaching new depths (“The peace process has no clothes,” writes Mideast analyst Nathan J. Brown), Bush hosts a conference in Annapolis between Israel and its Arab neighbors that enshrines the two-state solution. Hamas, which has seized power in Gaza and split with its rival Palestinian faction, Fatah, is not invited.

2008
An Israeli military offensive in Gaza wipes out dialogue between Israel’s Ehud Olmert and the Palestinian Authority’s Mahmoud Abbas.

2009-2010
U.S. President Barack Obama enters office promising to “actively and aggressively seek a lasting peace.” After securing a hard-won, 10-month settlement freeze from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Obama hosts face-to-face talks but fails to obtain substantive concessions.
Survey source: Gallup

Obama enrages Netanyahu by proposing that new negotiations start from pre-1967 borders with land swaps, while the Palestinians pursue statehood at the United Nations in lieu of talks. As 2012 begins, Mideast negotiator Ross recalls what Israeli official Dan Meridor once told him, “‘The peace process is like riding a bicycle: When you stop pedaling, you fall off.'” The Israelis and Palestinians, Ross says, “have stopped pedaling.”
Survey source: Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research

With the Israeli-Palestinian conflict arguably no closer to being resolved than it was a decade ago, one has to wonder: Has the much-vaunted “peace process,” hailed by U.S. presidents from both parties, become a charade? The phrase’s long history suggests that there’s been a lot more process than peace. Now, as Arab uprisings transform the Middle East and Israelis and Palestinians go their separate ways, it may be time to pick a new buzzword: stalemate. –Uri Friedman

1967
After the Six-Day War, U.N. Security Council Resolution 242 calls for Israel to withdraw from occupied territories in exchange for the end of hostilities and respect for the sovereignty of all states in the area. The imprecise language neuters the resolution, but the land-for-peace formula will inform — or haunt — peace efforts thereafter.

1973
Egypt and Syria launch coordinated surprise attacks on Israel in Sinai and the Golan Heights on Yom Kippur. The U.S.-Soviet brinkmanship over the war and the Arab oil embargo highlight the conflict’s geopolitical dimensions, and the United States devotes more diplomatic muscle to resolving it.

1973-1975
In what the media dub “shuttle diplomacy,” U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger holds bilateral talks with the Yom Kippur War belligerents, helping defuse the immediate crisis. Kissinger and his advisors refer to these diplomatic efforts as a “negotiating process” and then, as the political climate in the region defrosts, a “peace process.” The process stalls as U.S. President Richard Nixon resigns and Six-Day War hero Yitzhak Rabin assumes power in Israel.

1974
Arab leaders recognize the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) as the “sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people,” transforming the Palestinian question from one of refugee rights into one of nationalist aspirations. “I have come bearing an olive branch and a freedom fighter’s gun,” PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat informs the U.N. General Assembly a month later. “Do not let the olive branch fall from my hand.”

1975
An influential Brookings Institution study breaks with Kissinger’s incremental peace process, advocating a “comprehensive” Arab-Israeli settlement that would include Israel’s withdrawing to roughly its pre-1967 borders and support of Palestinian self-determination in return for diplomatic recognition and peace with its Arab neighbors.

1977
U.S. President Jimmy Carter brings several authors of the Brookings report into his administration and resolves to pursue a more ambitious peace process, surprising even his closest advisors by openly calling for a Palestinian “homeland.” Israel’s Menachem Begin and Egypt’s Anwar Sadat express an appetite for peace, and Sadat becomes the first Arab leader to visit Israel.

1978-1979
Sadat and Begin meet with Carter, producing the Camp David Accords and, a year later, an Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty in which Egypt recognizes Israel and Israel withdraws from Sinai. The treaty invites Israel’s other neighbors to “join the peace process with Israel.” No takers.

1982
After Sadat’s assassination and Israeli attacks on the PLO in Lebanon, U.S. President Ronald Reagan calls for a “fresh start,” urging Jordan to work with the Palestinians to achieve self-government. The goal goes unrealized.

1985
Dennis Ross, who would advise five U.S. presidents on the Middle East, argues that the United States should cautiously facilitate diplomacy in the region “while patiently awaiting real movement from the local parties.”

1987
Sheikh Ahmed Yassin founds Hamas amid the eruption of the First Intifada, a Palestinian uprising against Israeli control of the West Bank and Gaza. The group’s 1988 charter calls for Israel’s destruction and the creation of an Islamist Palestinian state through violent jihad.

1991
Emboldened by success in the Gulf War, U.S. President George H.W. Bush co-sponsors, with the Soviet Union, a conference in Madrid between Israel and Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and the Palestinians, who meet with Israeli negotiators for the first time. The dialogue achieves little, but it creates a long-missing framework for talks.

1993-1994
Secret Israel-PLO talks in Norway yield the first deal between the two sides, the Oslo Accords. They recognize one another and chart a five-year plan for Israel to cede control of the territories to a new Palestinian Authority and Palestinian leaders to crack down on terrorism before a final peace agreement. Rabin and Jordan’s King Hussein sign another peace treaty a year later.

1995
Jewish extremist Yigal Amir assassinates Rabin, who in his second term had become a strong advocate of a two-state solution. The Oslo peace process sputters.

2000
U.S. President Bill Clinton convenes Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak at Camp David to address Oslo’s thorniest issues: borders, security, settlements, refugees, and Jerusalem. But the talks collapse and the Second Intifada explodes in violence.

2001
A May report by former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell warns that the “greatest danger” in the Mideast is that “the culture of peace, nurtured over the previous decade, is being shattered.” After the 9/11 attacks, President George W. Bush makes no mention of the peace process in his 2002 State of the Union address.

2002-2003
As the United States builds a coalition to go to war in Iraq, Bush becomes the first U.S. president to call explicitly for an independent Palestinian state. The Saudis present an Arab League-endorsed peace plan, and the so-called Quartet — the United States, European Union, Russia, and United Nations — unveils a “road map” for peace that puts security ahead of a political agreement.

2007
With pessimism reaching new depths (“The peace process has no clothes,” writes Mideast analyst Nathan J. Brown), Bush hosts a conference in Annapolis between Israel and its Arab neighbors that enshrines the two-state solution. Hamas, which has seized power in Gaza and split with its rival Palestinian faction, Fatah, is not invited.

2008
An Israeli military offensive in Gaza wipes out dialogue between Israel’s Ehud Olmert and the Palestinian Authority’s Mahmoud Abbas.

2009-2010
U.S. President Barack Obama enters office promising to “actively and aggressively seek a lasting peace.” After securing a hard-won, 10-month settlement freeze from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Obama hosts face-to-face talks but fails to obtain substantive concessions.
Survey source: Gallup

Obama enrages Netanyahu by proposing that new negotiations start from pre-1967 borders with land swaps, while the Palestinians pursue statehood at the United Nations in lieu of talks. As 2012 begins, Mideast negotiator Ross recalls what Israeli official Dan Meridor once told him, “‘The peace process is like riding a bicycle: When you stop pedaling, you fall off.'” The Israelis and Palestinians, Ross says, “have stopped pedaling.”
Survey source: Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research

Uri Friedman is deputy managing editor at Foreign Policy . Before joining FP , he reported for the Christian Science Monitor, worked on corporate strategy for Atlantic Media, helped launch the Atlantic Wire, and covered international affairs for the site. A proud native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he studied European history at the University of Pennsylvania and has lived in Barcelona, Spain and Geneva, Switzerland. Twitter: @UriLF


Contents

Anwar Sadat was born on 25 December 1918 in Mit Abu El Kom, Monufia, Egypt to a poor family, one of 13 brothers and sisters. [10] One of his brothers, Atef Sadat, later became a pilot and was killed in action during the October War of 1973. [11] His father, Anwar Mohammed El Sadat was an Upper Egyptian, and his mother, Sit Al-Berain, was Sudanese from her father. [12] [13]

He graduated from the Royal Military Academy in Cairo in 1938 [14] and was appointed to the Signal Corps. He entered the army as a second lieutenant and was posted to Sudan (Egypt and Sudan were one country at the time). There, he met Gamal Abdel Nasser, and along with several other junior officers they formed the secret Free Officers, an organization committed to expelling the British presence from Egypt and removing royal corruption. [15]

During the Second World War he was imprisoned by the British for his efforts to obtain help from the Axis Powers in expelling the occupying British forces. Anwar Sadat was active in many political movements, including the Muslim Brotherhood, the fascist Young Egypt, the pro-palace Iron Guard of Egypt, and the secret military group called the Free Officers. [16] Along with his fellow Free Officers, Sadat participated in the military coup that launched the Egyptian Revolution of 1952, which overthrew King Farouk on 23 July of that year. Sadat was assigned to announce the news of the revolution to the Egyptian people over the radio networks.

During the presidency of Gamal Abdel Nasser, Sadat was appointed minister of State in 1954. He was also appointed editor of the newly founded daily Al Gomhuria. [17] In 1959, he assumed the position of Secretary to the National Union. Sadat was the President of the National Assembly (1960–1968) and then vice president and member of the presidential council in 1964. He was reappointed as vice president again in December 1969.

Some of the major events of Sadat's presidency were his "Corrective Revolution" to consolidate power, the break with Egypt's long-time ally and aid-giver the USSR, the 1973 October War with Israel, the Camp David peace treaty with Israel, the "opening up" (or Infitah) of Egypt's economy, and lastly his assassination in 1981.

Sadat succeeded Nasser as president after the latter's death in October 1970. [18] Sadat's presidency was widely expected to be short-lived. [19] Viewing him as having been little more than a puppet of the former president, Nasser's supporters in government settled on Sadat as someone they could manipulate easily. Sadat surprised everyone with a series of astute political moves by which he was able to retain the presidency and emerge as a leader in his own right. [20] On 15 May 1971, [21] Sadat announced his Corrective Revolution, purging the government, political and security establishments of the most ardent Nasserists. Sadat encouraged the emergence of an Islamist movement, which had been suppressed by Nasser. Believing Islamists to be socially conservative he gave them "considerable cultural and ideological autonomy" in exchange for political support. [22]

In 1971, three years into the War of Attrition in the Suez Canal zone, Sadat endorsed in a letter the peace proposals of UN negotiator Gunnar Jarring, which seemed to lead to a full peace with Israel on the basis of Israel's withdrawal to its pre-war borders. This peace initiative failed as neither Israel nor the United States of America accepted the terms as discussed then. [23]

Corrective Revolution

Shortly after taking office, Sadat shocked many Egyptians by dismissing and imprisoning two of the most powerful figures in the regime, Vice President Ali Sabri, who had close ties with Soviet officials, and Sharawy Gomaa, the Interior Minister, who controlled the secret police. [19] Sadat's rising popularity would accelerate after he cut back the powers of the hated secret police, [19] expelled Soviet military from the country [24] and reformed the Egyptian army for a renewed confrontation with Israel. [19]

Yom Kippur War

On 6 October 1973, in conjunction with Hafez al-Assad of Syria, Sadat launched the October War, also known as the Yom Kippur War (and less commonly as the Ramadan War), a surprise attack against the Israeli forces occupying the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula, [25] and the Syrian Golan Heights in an attempt to retake these respective Egyptian and Syrian territories that had been occupied by Israel since the Six Day War six years earlier. The Egyptian and Syrian performance in the initial stages of the war astonished both Israel, and the Arab World. The most striking achievement (Operation Badr, also known as The Crossing) was the Egyptian military's advance approximately 15 km into the occupied Sinai Peninsula after penetrating and largely destroying the Bar Lev Line. This line was popularly thought to have been an impregnable defensive chain.

As the war progressed, three divisions of the Israeli army led by General Ariel Sharon had crossed the Suez Canal, trying to encircle first the Egyptian Second Army. Although this failed, prompted by an agreement between the United States of America and the Soviet Union, the United Nations Security Council passed Resolution 338 on 22 October 1973, calling for an immediate ceasefire. [26] Although agreed upon, the ceasefire was immediately broken. [27] Alexei Kosygin, the Chairman of the USSR Council of Ministers, cancelled an official meeting with Danish Prime Minister Anker Jørgensen to travel to Egypt where he tried to persuade Sadat to sign a peace treaty. During Kosygin's two-day long stay it is unknown if he and Sadat ever met in person. [28] The Israeli military then continued their drive to encircle the Egyptian army. The encirclement was completed on 24 October, three days after the ceasefire was broken. This development prompted superpower tension, but a second ceasefire was imposed cooperatively on 25 October to end the war. At the conclusion of hostilities, Israeli forces were 40 kilometres (25 mi) from Damascus and 101 kilometres (63 mi) from Cairo. [29]

Peace with Israel

The initial Egyptian and Syrian victories in the war restored popular morale throughout Egypt and the Arab World and, for many years after, Sadat was known as the "Hero of the Crossing". Israel recognized Egypt as a formidable foe, and Egypt's renewed political significance eventually led to regaining and reopening the Suez Canal through the peace process. His new peace policy led to the conclusion of two agreements on disengagement of forces with the Israeli government. The first of these agreements was signed on 18 January 1974, and the second on 4 September 1975.

One major aspect of Sadat's peace policy was to gain some religious support for his efforts. Already during his visit to the US in October–November 1975, he invited Evangelical pastor Billy Graham for an official visit, which was held a few days after Sadat's visit. [31] In addition to cultivating relations with Evangelical Christians in the US, he also built some cooperation with the Vatican. On 8 April 1976, he visited the Vatican for the first time, and got a message of support from Pope Paul VI regarding achieving peace with Israel, to include a just solution to the Palestinian issue. [32] Sadat, on his part, extended to the Pope a public invitation to visit Cairo. [33] [ failed verification ]

Sadat also used the media to promote his purposes. In an interview he gave to the Lebanese paper El Hawadeth in early February 1976, he claimed he had secret commitment from the US government to put pressure on the Israeli government for a major withdrawal in Sinai and the Golan Heights. [34] This statement caused some concern to the Israeli government, but Kissinger denied such a promise was ever made. [35]

In January 1977, a series of 'Bread Riots' protested Sadat's economic liberalization and specifically a government decree lifting price controls on basic necessities like bread. The riots lasted for two days and included hundreds of thousands in Cairo. 120 buses and hundreds of buildings were destroyed in Cairo alone. [36] The riots ended with the deployment of the army and the re-institution of the subsidies/price controls. [37] [38] During this time, Sadat was also taking a new approach towards improving relations with the West. [19]

The United States and the Soviet Union agreed on 1 October 1977, on principles to govern a Geneva conference on the Middle East. [19] Syria continued to resist such a conference. [19] Not wanting either Syria or the Soviet Union to influence the peace process, Sadat decided to take more progressive stance towards building a comprehensive peace agreement with Israel. [19]

On 19 November 1977, Sadat became the first Arab leader to visit Israel officially when he met with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, and spoke before the Knesset in Jerusalem about his views on how to achieve a comprehensive peace to the Arab–Israeli conflict, which included the full implementation of UN Resolutions 242 and 338. He said during his visit that he hopes "that we can keep the momentum in Geneva, and may God guide the steps of Premier Begin and Knesset, because there is a great need for hard and drastic decision". [39]


History

State of Israel established when the Israeli Declaration of Independence is proclaimed. The text declares the State of Israel open for Jewish immigration and that the state will “ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants” regardless of religion, race, or sex.

David Ben-Gurion (center) reading Israel’s Declaration of Independence, May 14, 1948 (National Photo Collection of Israel)

The United States recognizes the provisional government of Israel. (Read more in America’s relationship to Israel.)

Expulsion and exodus of Jews from Arab countries begins the first wave lasts through 1951. With the establishment of the State of Israel, Jews leave Arab countries by the thousands.

Yemenite Jewish family walking through the desert, 1949 (National Photo Collection of Israel)

May 15

Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq invade Israel. Additional troops come from Saudi Arabia, under Egyptian command.

Altalena Affair: a confrontation between Israel Defense Forces and the Irgun. Sixteen Irgun fighters and three IDF soldiers are killed. The event is significant because it shows that David Ben-Gurion is prepared to fight other Jews to establish a single authority for the new state.

December

UN passes Resolution 194, affirming the right of return of Palestinian refugees.

First elections in Israel: The first Knesset is elected, with the Labor Zionist Mapai winning the majority of votes. David Ben-Gurion forms the first government. (Read more about how Israeli politics work here.)

David Ben-Gurion speaking in Knesset, July 1949 (National Photo Collection of Israel)

Armistice signed with Egypt in February, and in the months that follow, Israel signs armistice agreements with Lebanon, Jordan, and Syria.

Israel admitted to UN a little under a year after the state is established.

Operation Magic Carpet starts was the operation to airlift Yemenite Jews to Israel. 49,000 Jews come to Israel between 1949 and 1950 as a result of this program.

Yemenite Jews en route to Israel (Wikimedia Commons)

Jordan formally annexes the West Bank, a move that gives the residents of the West Bank Jordanian citizenship.

Law of Return passes, stating “Every Jew has the right to immigrate to the country,” sparking an influx of Jewish immigrants.

King Abdullah I of Jordan is assassinated while visiting al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem by a Palestinian nationalist who views his cooperation with Israel as a betrayal.

Operation Ezra & Nehemia airlift more than 100,000 Jews from Iraq through Iran and Cyprus between 1951 and 1952. The operation is named after Ezra and Nehemiah, who led the Jewish people out of Babylonian exile (poetic!).

Immigrants from Iraq arriving in Israel, May 1951 (National Photo Collection of Israel)

Gamal Abdul Nasser comes to power in Egypt under Nasser the Arab League puts the Gaza Strip under Egyptian control officially.

Nasser waving to crowds, Mansoura, Egypt, 1960 (Bibliotheca Alexandrina)

King Hussein comes to power in Jordan at age 17, increasing problems with the Palestinians living in Jordan who are angry at their inferior status.

King Hussein with Jordanian troops, March 1957 (Wikimedia Commons)

German reparations agreement: Israel signs a reparations agreement with West Germany. This is a controversial move, with some Israeli political figures claiming that it amounts to taking blood money.

Lavon Affair: a failed Israeli false-flag operation in Egypt (lasts through 1955) wherein Egyptian Jews are recruited to foment instability in Egypt by planting bombs and blaming the Muslim Brotherhood.

Nasser nationalizes the Suez canal: This move eventually leads to the Suez Crisis, which erupts after Israel, with backing from Britain and France, invade Sinai on October 29, 1956, as a pretext for those countries to intervene to protect the canal zone.

Suez Canal, during the initial Anglo-French assault on Port Said, November 5, 1956 (Imperial War Museum)

Kafr Qasim massacre: Israeli border police kill 48 Arab civilians deemed in violation of an Israeli-imposed curfew.

Israel withdraws from the Sinai Peninsula in March, officially ending the Suez Crisis.

Fatah formed by Yasser Arafat and three others in the Gulf as a Palestinian nationalist movement. (Read more about Palestinian politics here.)

Adolf Eichmann is captured in Argentina by the Mossad, brought to Israel, and eventually tried and executed.

Operation Yakhin (Yachin) helps Moroccan Jews emigrate to Israel about 97,000 Moroccan Jews leave by plane and ship between 1961 and 1964.

Dimona Nuclear Reactor: Israel’s nuclear reactor (in Dimona, Israel) begins operations. Israel has never formally acknowledged that it has nuclear weapons capacity.

PLO Founded in Cairo: The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) calls for the liberation of Palestine and the destruction of Israel through armed struggle, as well as the establishment of an “independent Palestinian state” between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. (Read more about the PLO here.)

Yasser Arafa (center) in Amman, Jordan, June 1970 (Al Ahram Weekly)

Egypt escalates regional tensions, closes the Straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping, and expels the UN peacekeepers from the Sinai Peninsula.

June 5 — 10

Six-Day War: To preempt Egyptian strikes, Israel launches air strikes against Egypt, taking Egypt by surprise and destroying nearly its entire air force within 24 hours. By the end of the war, Israel controls the Gaza Strip, Sinai Peninsula, West Bank, Eastern Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights.

After the Six-Day War, Israel controlled the Sinai, Gaza Strip, West Bank, and Golan Heights

The new territories will completely alter the political conversation in Israel (and outside it). Israel considers offering the majority of the land in exchange for peace.

September

First West Bank Settlement established in Kfar Etzion, an Israeli community in the West Bank. (Read more about settlements here.)

Khartoum Resolution: The Arab League meets in Khartoum, Sudan and adopts the Three No’s:

  1. No peace with Israel
  2. No recognition of Israel
  3. No direct negotiations with Israel

November

UN Resolution 242 adopted, calling for Israel to withdraw from territories occupied during the Six-Day War. This formula, known as the “land for peace,” would form the basis for all subsequent efforts to resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict. (Read more about attempts to solve the conflict here.)

War of Attrition begins: Egypt launches this against Israel after the Six-Day War basically, artillery shelling into the Sinai, aerial warfare, and raids. Ends with a ceasefire in 1970.

Golda Meir elected Prime Minister.

Black September: King Hussein declares military rule and expels Arafat from Jordan. The Palestinian leadership flees to south Lebanon.

Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine fighters, Jordan, 1969 (Thomas R. Koeniges/Look Magazine)

Munich Olympic Massacre: Palestinian terrorists kidnap and murder 11 Israeli athletes (and one West German police officer) during the Summer Olympics. Five terrorists are killed, and the Mossad launches Operation Wrath of God to assassinate those involved.

Yom Kippur War: Arab forces from Egypt and Syria lead surprise attacks on Israel on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish year, hoping to gain back territories lost in 1967. Even though Israel eventually prevails, it’s considered a diplomatic and military failure.

Arafat addresses the UN, in a famous speech: “Today I come bearing an olive branch in one hand, and the freedom fighter’s gun in the other. Do not let the olive branch fall from my hand. I repeat, do not let the olive branch fall from my hand.”

Civil War breaks out in Lebanon: The PLO initially try and stay out of the conflict, but they eventually team up with the leftist Lebanese forces.

UN Resolution 3379 calls Zionism “a form of racism and racial discrimination.”

Land Day protests: the first Arab general strike in Israeli history to protest Israeli expropriation of Arab land in the Galilee. “Land Day” on March 30 becomes an annual day of protest and commemoration.

Entebbe Rescue Operation: In July, an Air France plane, flying from Tel Aviv to Paris, is hijacked by a faction of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine alongside German terrorists. Mossad mounts a rescue operation and rescues most of the hostages. One Israeli — Benjamin Netanyahu’s older brother, Yonatan — is killed.

Likud comes to power (this is called the Mahapakh or “Upheaval”): Menachem Begin, leader of Likud, is elected, ending Labor’s dominance. The first time a right-wing party is in power in Israel.

Egyptian President Anwar Sadat addresses Knesset, signaling his willingness to make peace between Israel and Egypt.

Camp David Accords: Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat come together at Camp David with U.S. President Jimmy Carter to negotiate a peace treaty, the first ever between Israel and an Arab country. Israel agrees to withdraw from the Sinai Peninsula in exchange for peace (#LandForPeace). Begin and Sadat receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

L-R: Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, U.S. President Jimmy Carter, and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, Camp David, September 1978 (U.S. Government Archives)

Basic Law on Jerusalem (also known as the “Jerusalem Law”) passed by the Knesset, declaring Jerusalem, “complete and united,” the capital of Israel.

Sadat is assassinated by a member of Egyptian Islamic Jihad, mainly over discontent over signing the Camp David Accords and the peace treaty.

Israel annexes the Golan Heights, a move not recognized by the international community.

Lebanon War: Israel invades southern Lebanon after skirmishes on the border between the PLO and the IDF.

An Israeli tank, June 1982 (Wikimedia Commons)

Sabra & Shatila Massacre: Christian Phalangists (allied with the IDF) murder Palestinian refugees in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camp in Beirut. An investigation finds that Israeli military personnel failed to stop this massacre and therefore bore responsibility. Defense Minister Ariel Sharon resigns.

Hezbollah founded: Muslim clerics, funded by Iran, form Hezbollah in response to the Israeli attack on Lebanon.

Great Synagogue of Rome attack: Palestinian militants attack Rome’s Great Synagogue, killing one and injuring 37.

Israel withdraws from most of Lebanon in August but maintains a “security zone” in southern Lebanon.

Operation Moses: the secret evacuation of Ethiopian Jews (Beta Israel/Falashas) from Sudan over 8,000 Jews are brought to Israel.

Ethiopian Jewish children, January 1985 (Israeli Government Press Office)

Israel bombs PLO headquarters in Tunis, in retaliation for the murder of Israeli tourists on a yacht off the coast of Cyprus earlier that year.

Hezbollah releases its manifesto, with the central goal of destroying Israel.

Hamas founded, as an offshoot of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, after PLO begins to seek a negotiated solution with Israel. Founded by Sheik Ahmed Yassin and others, Hamas is a Sunni fundamentalist group that sought to liberate Palestine and place it under Muslim rule. (Read more about Hamas here.)

First Intifada begins, lasting through 1991. The first intifada includes riots, Molotov cocktail attacks, assaults with guns, and explosives along with other forms of non-violent resistance.

Hussein gives up Jordan’s claim on the West Bank, with the exception of guardianship over Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem.

Hamas charter issued, defining Palestinian nationalism as a struggle against Islam’s enemies. Hamas calls for a rooting out of the “Zionist invasion” and “to raise the banner of Allah over every inch of Palestine.”

PLO Declaration of Independence signed in Algiers, Algeria. The Palestinian National Council (PNC) votes to endorse UN resolution 242, which some understand as implicit recognition of Israel.

Arafat (center) with the Palestinian National Council (PNC)

Post-Soviet aliyah: After Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev opens the borders of the Soviet Union, thousands of Soviet Jews flee. About 979,000 make aliyah to Israel between 1989 and 1991.

Scud Missile Attacks: Iraq attacks Israel with 39 Scud missiles in the course of the Gulf War.

Operation Solomon: Israel secretly airlifts nearly 15,000 Ethiopian Jews (Beta Israel) to Israel in a 36-hour period.

Madrid Peace Conference: The U.S. and Soviet Union jointly organize a meeting between Israeli and Palestinian leaders (and leaders from Lebanon, Jordan, and Syria).

President Bush addresses the conference, Royal Palace in Madrid, Spain, October 1991 (David Valdez/National Archives and Records Administration)

Yitzhak Rabin elected prime minister.

Oslo Accords signed: After secret negotiations in Oslo, Norway, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat sign the accords on the White House lawn. Oslo has three key components: mutual recognition between Israel and the PLO the establishment of the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the division of the West Bank into Israeli and Palestinian spheres of authority. (Read more about trying to solve the conflict here.)

Arafat, Clinton, and Rabin at the White House

Cave of the Patriarchs Massacre: Baruch Goldstein, an American-born Jew, walks into the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron and kills 29 Muslim worshippers and injures 125 before he is beaten to death. The massacre is one of the deadliest terror attacks in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty: Jordan becomes the second Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel.

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Yitzhak Rabin, Shimon Peres, and Yasser Arafat, which they win for the Oslo Accords.

L-R: Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres, and Yitzhak Rabin receiving the Nobel Peace Prize

Rabin assassinated: Yigal Amir, a Jewish extremist and Israeli ultra-nationalist, kills Yitzhak Rabin after a rally for peace. Amir believed Rabin’s peace policies endangered Jewish lives. Rabin’s assassination has disastrous effects on the peace process.

Mourning for Rabin, November 1995 (Israel PikiWiki Project)

Suicide bombing wave begins: Three suicide bombings on buses and a mall prompt a severe military crackdown by Israel and erode public faith in the peace process.

Operation Grapes of Wrath: a campaign by IDF to attempt to end Hezbollah’s attacks on northern Israel.

Netanyahu elected: Benjamin Netanyahu (Likud) comes to power for the first time.

Wye River Memorandum signed by Netanyahu and Arafat, agreeing on steps to implement Oslo II.

Ehud Barak elected Prime Minister.

Lebanon withdrawal: Israel withdraws completely from southern Lebanon in May.

Barak-Arafat peace talks at Camp David, aimed at reaching a “final status” agreement, breaks down before that happens.

Second Intifada begins after Ariel Sharon visits the Temple Mount in September, sparking riots and protests.

Sharon visits the Temple Mount (AP Photo)

This intifada (lasting until 2005) sees Israel shaken by suicide bombings, rocket attacks, and other types of attacks. Israel meets this with deadly force. In over five years, around 1,000 Israelis and 3,000 Palestinians are killed. Skepticism around the peace process grows.

Barak resigns in December.

Ariel Sharon elected, defeating Ehud Barak.

Arab League peace proposal: the Arab League meet in Beirut and call for unilateral Israeli withdrawal from Arab territories and a “just settlement” of the Palestine refugee problem, in exchange for normalized relations between Arab nations and Israel. Israel never officially responds.

Passover Massacre: A Hamas suicide attack on a Passover seder kills 30 the deadliest attack during the Second Intifada.

Operation Defensive Shield: a military operation in the West Bank conducted during the Second Intifada, with the goal of thwarting terror attacks.

Security barrier planned: Israel begins construction of a security barrier between the West Bank and Israel. Palestinians refer to it as an “apartheid wall.” (Read more about the use of “apartheid” here.)

Arafat dies at age 75 in Paris, after undergoing medical treatment. The circumstances surrounding his death are still unclear. He’s succeeded as head of the PLO by Mahmoud Abbas.

Arafat Funeral (Abbas Momani/AFP)

Gaza withdrawal, ordered by Sharon, where nearly 10,000 Jewish settlers are removed from Gaza and the Israeli army withdraws from inside the Gaza Strip. (Read more here.)

Hamas wins Palestinian legislative elections for the first time. Ismail Haniyeh becomes Prime Minister.

Hamas election rally, Ramallah, West Bank, 2006 (Wikimedia Commons)

Hamas captures an Israeli soldier: Gilad Shalit is captured by Hamas during a cross-border raid.

July — August

Second Lebanon War: Hezbollah initiates the war with a cross-border raid on July 12 that kills three soldiers and captures two. Israel then attacks Hezbollah targets in Lebanon and launches a ground invasion of southern Lebanon. The conflict ends with a UN ceasefire.

Hamas controls Gaza: Hamas fighters take over the Gaza Strip and remove all Fatah officials. (Read more here.)

Abbas-Olmert peace talks: They ultimately fail, but it’s probably the closest the two sides have ever gotten to peace.

Operation Cast Lead: 22 days of fighting, beginning in December 2008 and ending in January 2009. Israeli goal is to stop Hamas rockets launching from Gaza into southern Israel Hamas says its rockets are a response to Israeli military actions.

Gaza flotilla raid: Israel raids the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, six ships intended to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza nine activists are killed.

One of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla ships (Free Gaza Movement/Flickr)

Abbas submits a request to the UN to recognize Palestine, in an effort for the State of Palestine to be internationally recognized.

Shalit freed and prisoner exchange: Hamas and Israel reach a deal in which Gilad Shalit is freed in exchange for 1,027 Palestinian prisoners.

Operation Pillar of Defense launched in Gaza in an effort to stop Hamas rocket attacks. A week after operation begins, a ceasefire (mediated by Egypt) is agreed upon.

Three Israeli teens are kidnapped in the West Bank, resulting in a massive IDF operation to find them. Their bodies are later found near Hebron. In retaliation, a Palestinian teen is kidnapped, beaten, and burned alive by Jewish extremists.

The 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict, also called “Operation Protective Edge,” begins, again with the aim of stopping rockets from Gaza into Israel and destroying Hamas tunnels. A ceasefire is agreed upon in late August.

Duma Firebombing: A Jewish extremist firebombs a Palestinian family home in Duma, killing an 18-month-old and his parents.

“Stabbing Intifada” begins Palestinians try (and sometimes succeed) to kill Israeli civilians with knives.

U.S. Embassy opens in Jerusalem, a move hailed in Israel and by some American Jewish groups, while drawing criticism from many other governments and fueling massive Palestinian protests. (Read more here.)

Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi released. (Read more here.)

Netanyahu elected (again). (Read more here.) (Actually, now there will be a new election. Read more here.)

The Suez Crisis refers to the invasion by Israel of Egypt in 1956, in coordination with France and England.

Known to Israelis as Operation Protective Edge, this was a military campaign launched by Israel in 2014 in response to the kidnapping and murder of three Jewish teenagers by Hamas.

Jihad is an Arabic word meaning “struggle” that can refer both to holy war against nonbelievers and personal moral struggle.

Fatah is the political party of Yasser Arafat.

Black September refers both to a conflict fought between Jordan and the Palestine Liberation Organization and to the terrorist group that carried out the massacre of 11 Israeli atheletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972.

The Palestine Liberation Organization was a group founded in 1948 to liberate Palestinian territories through force. Israel considered the PLO a terrorist group prior to the 1994 Oslo Accords.

The Palestinian Authority is a Palestinian governing body established for the purposes of Palestinian self-government by the 1994 Oslo Accords.

The Second Intifada was a period of Israeli-Palestinian violence sparked by the visit of Ariel Sharon to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem in 2000.

The First Intifada was a Palestinian uprising against Israel that began in 1987 and lasted for several years.

The Oslo Accords were a series of agreements signed by Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization aimed at achieving a peace treaty between the sides and a final resolution of the conflict.

The Camp David Accords were a 1978 agreement between Egypt and Israel, negotiated under the auspices of U.S. President Jimmy Carter, which paved the pay for an Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty the following year, the first such agreement between Israel and an Arab state.

The Six-Day War was a war between Israel and multiple Arab states in 1967 that resulted in Israel vastly expanding the territory under its control, including the disputed territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Yasser Arafat was the chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization and, following the Oslo Accords, the president of the Palestinian Authority. He died in 2004.

The Knesset is Israel’s parliament.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque is the name of the religious shrine that sits atop the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The mount is the site from which Muslims believe Muhammad ascended to heaven and where the two Jewish temples once stood.

The Golan Heights is a plateau captured by Israel from Syria in the 1967 war. It was effectively annexed by Israel in 1981.

The Yom Kippur War was a 1973 conflict fought between Israel and a coalition of Arab states. It began with a surprise Arab attack on the Jewish Day of Atonement.

David Ben-Gurion was the first prime minister of the State of Israel.

The West Bank is the territory captured from Jordan by Israel in 1967. It remains the core piece of disputed territory between Israelis and Palestinians.

The Gaza Strip is a coastal territory bordered by Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea. The strip was occupied by Israel following the 1967 war and returned to Palestinian control in 2005.


I Didn’t Come Back to Jerusalem To Be in a War

Photo by STF/AFP/Getty Images.

I’m in Jerusalem on book leave and everyone keeps asking me to write about all this mess. I keep saying that I don’t ever write about things I can’t fully understand. It’s why I like the law—it’s tidy. I don’t have much to say about what is happening all around me here in Israel. But maybe I can share a memory.

Thirty-five years ago, I spent a year with my family in Jerusalem. I was 10, and my dad was on an academic sabbatical at Hebrew University. My best friend and I danced to Europop in the living room every afternoon. It was the best year of my life.

And 35 years ago this week, Anwar Sadat addressed the Israeli Knesset in an unprecedented and historic move toward establishing peace between Israel and Egypt. My little brother and I stayed up half the night making an enormous Egyptian flag. We colored it in with pencils and crayons and trekked up to the Knesset with it, where we stood on the sidewalk with throngs of Israelis, waiting for his mortorcade to arrive. Our flag was so huge, we took up three feet of sidewalk.

My indelible memory of that day—in the pale greens and reds of the late ‘70s—is that President Sadat smiled and waved at the two kids with the massive Egyptian flag as he drove past, and then we probably went home for ice cream. Sadat said in his remarks that Israel had a right to exist. We really believed he had made history that day. We had the flag to prove it. (Here is Daniel Gordis’ lovely piece on his memories of that same day.)

I didn’t come back to Jerusalem to be in a war. I didn’t come to Jerusalem to write about Middle East politics either. I came because I needed to take some time away to write my book about the Supreme Court (thank you, it’s going fine) and because my parents live here in Israel and we wanted to spend a year with them. I came because we desperately wanted to give our sons—who are seven and nine—a year in which their world became bigger and more complicated, since everything in their lives up until now had been measured out in equal units of comfort and Lego.

I don’t really want to write a heartbreaking account of the sirens in Jerusalem Friday night, or the touching and innocent commentary offered up by our boys as they told us they were scared and wanted to go home. I am just not sure how such accounts help us move forward. I am fully aware that innocent children on either side are being traumatized by growing up in this way.

I don’t know how to talk about what is happening here but it’s probably less about writers’ block than readers’ block. It says so much about the state of our discourse that the surest way to enrage everyone is to tweet about peace in the Middle East. We should be doing better because, much as I hate to say it, the harrowing accounts of burnt-out basements and baby shoes on each side of this conflict don’t constitute a conversation. Counting and photographing and tweeting injured children on each side isn’t dialogue. Scoring your own side’s suffering is a powerful way to avoid fixing the real problems, and trust me when I tell you that everyone—absolutely everyone—is suffering and sad and yet being sad is not fixing the problems either.

One good lesson I am learning this week is to shut up and listen. Because the only way to cut through the mutual agony here is to find people who have solutions and to hear what they have to say. Bombing the other side into oblivion is no more a solution than counting your dead children in public. The best thing about shutting up and listening? You eventually lose the impulse to speak.

Please don’t judge. Work toward solutions. Because everyone on every side of this is desperate. This isn’t a way to live and we all know it. Last night I was at a study session with a group of women in Jerusalem. A teenage girl was crying and I assumed it was over a guy. It’s always a guy. But it wasn’t. She was headed to the army today.

Friday night when the air raid sirens sounded here in Jerusalem, my husband Aaron was on a Skype conference call with a bunch of students in London describing his ten-years-in-the-making white flags installation. As I typed these words, Ynet’s live blog flashed this: “17:09: Hamas’s armed wing, the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, says it’s launched ‘two M75 homemade missiles towards Jerusalem.’ ” And there was Aaron’s disembodied voice from the next room, explaining that in the end we are all part of a single human family destined to the same fate. And I was typing, “But I don’t want to die this way.” And my boys were watching Ice Age 4—which was blessedly louder than the sirens Friday night. They told us they would like to go home now.

You want to hear about what it’s like here? It’s fucking sad. Everyone I know is sad. My kids don’t care who started it and the little boys in Issawiya, the Arab village I see out my window, don’t care much either. I haven’t met a single Israeli who is happy about this. They know this fixes nothing. The one thing we learned this week is how quickly humans can come to normalize anything. But the hopelessness seeps right into your bones as well.

I am worried about our friends here who are being called up. I am worried about my friends here who are war correspondents. I am worried about terrified children in Gaza. I am also worried about how I will explain to my sons why we are staying, but I’m more worried about what I would tell them if we left. I am crazy-worried about my parents who live in the south, where 1400 rockets have been fired since January. I am worried about how this can possibly ever end if just tweeting about peace is an international act of aggression.

So tonight I will tell my kids about Sadat’s visit 35 years ago, just as we told them last month about Yitzhak Rabin. I hope they understand what I am trying to tell them, because—forgive me—what they think matters more to me than what you all think right now. People who tell me you can’t teach children about peace in a war zone are wrong. We have nothing but peace left to talk about.


Remembering Anwar Sadat’s legacy

From left: Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, President Jimmy Carter, and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin clasped hands in 1979 after Egypt and Israel signed a peace treaty. Bob Daugherty/Associated Press/File

Forty years ago — on Nov. 19, 1977 — Egyptian President Anwar Sadat embarked on a groundbreaking visit to Jerusalem. The 1979 peace treaty he later signed with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin set in motion the unmistakable dynamic of the Israeli-Arab rapprochement we witness today.

Prior to Sadat’s visit, Bahrain’s king, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, would have never openly expressed his opposition to the Arab boycott against Israel, and Israeli flags would have never flown openly throughout the streets of Iraqi Kurdistan. Today, Jordanian, Palestinian and Israeli emergency response teams participate in joint exercises on our soil, while Israeli high-tech firms hire engineers from Gaza and our military teams and doctors treat refugees on the Syrian border.

But even with such progress, there is no room for complacency Israel must remain vigilant. Iran and its jihadist proxies in Hezbollah and Hamas are committed to our destruction and will go to the ends of the earth to see it through.

There are other — albeit less threatening — signs that Sadat’s vision has not yet reached fruition. Take the scandal that surrounded this year’s Judo Grand Slam in Abu Dhabi. The International Judo Federation and the United Arab Emirates made a mockery of the very essence of sport when they refused to fly the Israeli flag, play our national anthem, and properly deliver the medals to the five Israeli athletes who earned them.

What made the snub all the more frustrating was that Israel opened an official mission to the International Renewable Energy Agency in the UAE in 2015.

Yet even here lies a silver lining. In a meeting following the Judo competition, officials from the Judo Federation, Israel and the UAE met to discuss the events that took place. The UAE apologized for the athletes who had refused to shake hands with their Israeli competitors and even congratulated our team on its success.

Danny Danon, Israel’s ambassador to the UN, refers to matters of the like as delicate “balancing acts.” Recalling the moment he was elected to chair the UN Legal Committee, Danon stated: “When I put my name in I had to listen to the ambassadors from Iran, Yemen and Syria say why Israel could not hold this position, but it was a secret ballot.” He won 109-44, with 12 ambassadors from Muslim states either voting for Israel or abstaining.

Sadat deserves much credit for this positive shift in behavior toward Israel. He believed that Arab States should view Israel as we truly are — an asset to strengthen the Middle East, not a country to be destroyed.

The success of Sadat’s journey to Jerusalem was replicated in 1994 between Israel and Jordan when King Hussein formally recognized Israel, pursued direct negotiations with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, and ushered in peace between Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom.

Israel and Muslim states have come a long way in the past 40 years. As Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu emphasized at this year’s UN General Assembly, Israel stands “shoulder-to-shoulder with those in the Arab world who share our hopes for a brighter future.”

Last week I hosted in Boston recently-retired Israeli Supreme Court Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, who was part of the Israeli team at the Camp David talks with Egypt. He described waiting for Sadat at Ben-Gurion Airport as the most significant experience of his professional career. In his words, it was as if he could “hear the wings of history.”

Rubinstein recalled being told at the time by an otherwise skeptical Israeli minister: “Look, if this is hopeful in another 15 years, I’ll think the price was worthwhile.” Forty years later, with tensions between Israel and Arab States on the decline, I believe that the price was categorically worthwhile.

For me, that hope for rapprochement capsulizes the importance of what Sadat pursued. We should all take a moment to remember him.


You've only scratched the surface of Sadat family history.

Between 1984 and 1997, in the United States, Sadat life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1985, and highest in 1997. The average life expectancy for Sadat in 1984 was 50, and 82 in 1997.

An unusually short lifespan might indicate that your Sadat ancestors lived in harsh conditions. A short lifespan might also indicate health problems that were once prevalent in your family. The SSDI is a searchable database of more than 70 million names. You can find birthdates, death dates, addresses and more.


Timeline: Israel, UAE deal follows years of failed peace initiatives

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates intended to fully normalise relations follows a history of peace efforts between Israel and the Palestinians and their Arab allies that have failed to overcome decades of distrust and violence.

Most Arab nations, including the UAE, have not recognised Israel or had formal diplomatic or economic relations with it because of what they regard as Israel’s thwarting of Palestinians’ aspirations for a state of their own.

Here are the main initiatives undertaken by the parties themselves and international mediators since the 1967 Middle East War, when Israel captured the West Bank and East Jerusalem, the Sinai peninsula and the Gaza Strip and the Golan Heights:

1967 - U.N. Security Council Resolution 242

After the Six-Day War, U.N. Security Council Resolution 242 calls for the “withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict” in return for all states in the area to respect each other’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence.

The resolution is the foundation for many peace initiatives but its imprecise phrasing - is the reference to all territories or just some? - has complicated efforts for decades.

1978 - Camp David agreement

Israel’s Menachem Begin and Egypt’s Anwar Sadat agree on a framework for regional peace that calls for an Israeli withdrawal in stages from Egypt’s Sinai and a transitional Palestinian government in the West Bank and Gaza.

1979 - Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty

The first peace treaty between Israel and an Arab country sets out plans for a complete Israeli withdrawal from Sinai within three years. in 1981, Sadat was assassinated by Islamist revolutionaries at a military parade in Cairo.

Representatives of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) attend a peace conference. No agreements are reached but the scene is set for direct contacts.

1994 - Israel-Jordan agreement

Jordan becomes the second Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel. But the treaty is unpopular and pro-Palestinian sentiment is widespread in Jordan.

1993-1995 - Declaration of Principles/Oslo Accords

Israel and the PLO hold secret talks in Norway that result in interim peace accords calling for the establishment of a Palestinian interim self-government and an elected council in the West Bank and Gaza for a five-year transitional period, Israeli troop withdrawals and negotiations on a permanent settlement.

U.S. President Bill Clinton convenes Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak at Camp David. They fail to agree. Another Palestinian uprising ensues.

2002-2003 - Bush Declaration/Arab peace initiative/Road Map

George W. Bush becomes the first U.S. president to call for the creation of a Palestinian state, living side-by-side with Israel “in peace and security”.

2002 - Saudi Arabia presents Arab League-endorsed peace plan for full Israeli withdrawal from occupied territory and Israel’s acceptance of a Palestinian state in return for normal relations with Arab countries. The United States, the European Union, the United Nations and Russia present their own roadmap to a permanent two-state solution to the conflict.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert fail to reach a deal at a U.S.-hosted summit. Olmert later says they were close to a deal but a graft investigation against him and a Gaza war in 2008 scupper any agreement.

2009 - Netanyahu’s Bar-Ilan address

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he would be prepared for a peace deal that includes the establishment of a demilitarised Palestinian state. He also sets another condition: Palestinian recognition of Israel as the “state of the Jewish people”.

2013 - 2014 - Washington peace talks/negotiations collapse

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry coaxes Israelis and Palestinians to resume talks. They fail and are suspended in April 2014.

June 2019 - Trump economic plan announced

Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, launches its preliminary stage in Bahrain. He takes an “economy first” approach, calling for a $50 billion investment fund to boost the Palestinian and neighbouring Arab economies. Palestinian leaders dismiss it.

Netanyahu says he intends to annex West Bank settlements, and much of the Jordan Valley if elected. Later, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo effectively backs Israel’s claimed right to build Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank by abandoning a four-decade-old U.S. position that they were inconsistent with international law.

Arab League head Ahmed Aboul Gheit says in June 2019 the only acceptable resolution for Arab states is Israel’s acceptance of the initiative drawn up by Saudi Arabia in 2002.



Comments:

  1. Fachnan

    Very useful information

  2. Broden

    What's the phrase ... Super, brilliant idea

  3. Voodooran

    How long can you talk about one and the same topic, the whole blogosphere is fucked up?

  4. Akidal

    You have kept away from conversation

  5. Vomuro

    In my opinion, he is wrong. I'm sure. Write to me in PM, it talks to you.

  6. Yozshutaxe

    This does not suit me.

  7. Constantine Dwyne

    It is remarkable, very good message



Write a message