Creating Peace Through Strength

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That bloody war, initiated and led by Egypt, took the lives of more than 2500 courageous Israelis. Furthermore, Egypt also was at the forefront of the Arab wars to eliminate the Jewish state in 1948, 1956 and 1967. Accordingly, one could not be faulted for thinking that Begin would bend over backwards to encourage Sadat to come to Jerusalem.

This was not the case.

In fact, “the day after Sadat’s speech,” Hirschler and Eckman continue,

Begin issued a public statement to make sure that Sadat was not coming to Israel under the illusion that Israel would be ready to capitulate to the Arab political and territorial demands for the sake of peace. [Begin asserted that] “Israel categorically and absolutely rejects conditions named by President Sadat; i.e., total withdrawal to the June, 1967 lines[.]”

Despite Begin’s sternness—his “sticking to his guns,” as Margaret Thatcher once admired of Begin—on Monday, November 14, Sadat told American journalist Walter Cronkite that he was prepared to go to Israel, provided he received a “proper” invitation. “The next day…Begin addressed an official invitation to ‘His Excellency, Mr. Anwar el-Sadat, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Cairo.’”

True, Begin ended up making far-ranging concessions to Sadat—relinquishing the entire mineral-rich Sinai peninsula, a territory three times the size of Israel proper, can and should be considered far-reaching—however, Begin steadfastly refused to cross what is universally considered as Israel’s ‘red line,’ namely a retreat to the ‘Auschwitz borders.’ For Begin, “Everything was negotiable except the survival of the state of Israel.”

That peace between Egypt and Israel was only possible because Begin adhered to his convictions is reinforced by Hirschler and Eckman with an additional, invaluable anecdote. They recount a monumental occurrence in the lead-up to Sadat’s historic speech to the People’s Assembly, in which the Egyptian President visited Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu. During their meeting, which followed Begin’s visit to Romania a few weeks earlier, Sadat and Ceausescu discussed the Israeli Prime Minister, and the prospects of a comprehensive Egypt-Israeli peace initiative.

In an interview with Time magazine [later that year], Sadat was to recall having asked Ceasescu whether he considered Begin a sufficiently strong leader to be able to make peace in the Middle East. Both president’s agreed that Begin’s predecessor, [Yitzhak] Rabin, had been “weak.” But then, said Sadat, “Ceasescu told me what he had discussed with Begin, and we reached the conclusion that [this] man is strong.”

To reiterate: “Begin is strong.” And the result was peace.

For peace is made in strength.

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  • Supreme_Galooty

    When the Strategic Air Command operated at Fairchild Air Force Base near Spokane, the sign over their gate read, "Peace Is Our Profession." The men and women who fought the war and waged the peace after WWII were grown-ups who understood the concept of Peace Through Strength. Had the September 11th attacks occured on their watch, Saudi Arabia would be under military tribunal government, Mecca would be demolished, and their oil fields would be pumping AMERICAN oil.

    Our country – for the past many years – has been overwhelmed by quislings, milquetoast effeminate cowards who cannot conceive of peace except in the most idealistic of fantasies. With friends and neighbors such as these, one needs no enemies.

  • Clare

    … yet time and again they rejected generous offers tabled to them by Israeli leaders, notably by Ehud Barack in 2000 and subsequently by Ehud Olmert in 2008.

    The question arises: at what point is enough actually enough?

    The answer is now.

    The “peace process” is a political charade, the effects of which are deadly:

    This is music to my ears. This "peace process" has timed out; the "pals" should be given no further recognition. All done.

  • James Hovland

    You’re missing one very important piece of the puzzle. When strength is used to impose or enforce injustice, it does not create peace, it creates terrorism.

    Remember 911?

    There is a point when strength isn’t enough and security eventually becomes a prison that requires giving up you rights and freedoms. I imagine a body scan a cavity search at the airport before a long flights is what it’s going to take for some people to understand this. Others might take in information a little easier. When a would-be terrorist can walk into any gun store in America and arm himself for an attack, your choices are limited. Give up the freedom or ease of buying a gun, or simply stop making enemies and supporting injustice. The choice seems simple to me.

  • James Hovland

    Galooty don’t be so naive.

    Just like Iraq, WWII required an intensive propaganda campaign at home and abroad in order to take America to war.

    Besides we already had favorable trade agreements with Saudi Arabia. You seem more in tune with the propaganda than any real foreign policy at play. The chest beating is just a show. War is about for-profit capitalism.

    I don’t suppose you’ve tried to put a price tag on Shock and Awe yet have you? I’m sure someone had a good Christmas at the tax payers expense.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    In other words, Israel is made weak. The irony—and tragedy—is that a feeble Israel cannot make peace; peace can only be made in strength.

    I agree with the writer that the peace process is fake. It is a deceptive ploy used by the Islamic world to weaken Israel and to dupe useful idiots, i.e., the EU and the US State Department. However, there is no peace possible between the Islamic world and Israel, since as long as there remains unbelievers somewhere in the world, there will be jihad waged against them to force them to submit to the authority Islam.

    I also agree very much with the concept of peace through strength. It would not stop the Islamic world from eternally wanting to destroy Israel and all other unbeliever countries that haven't been forced to submit to Allah, per the dictates of Islam, but it would force them to refrain from attacking Israel and other unbeliever countries because they are too weak, resulting in peace through strength nonetheless.

    In any event, with respect to the so-called peace between Egypt and Israel, it was a peace between Sadat and Israel. It never was a peace between the Islamic world and the infidel state of Israel, as Sadat was executed for his blasphemy and apostasy per the dictates of Islam.

    Subsequently it became a peace between Mubarak and Israel, but as has become obvious now that Mubarak has been overthrown, it was not a peace that was supported by the masses of Egyptian people, but a peace maintained nonetheless only because Egypt and the Islamic world were too weak to defeat Israel. In other words, it was really peace through strength that was responsible for the maintenance of peace.

    Indeed, if Egypt and the Islamic world ever perceived they had gained the upper hand, they would not hesitate one second to attempt to destroy Israel. Thus, the only kind of peace that can be maintained between Israel and the Islamic world and between the Islamic world and the non-Islamic world is peace through strength.

    In other words, the non-Islamic world should do everything in its power to stop Iran from getting nukes at all cost and also to destroy Pakistan's nuclear weapons arsenal. At the same time, the non-Islamic world should ban and reverse all Islamic immigration and isolate the Islamic world. Finally, the non-Islamic world should also seize the Mid East oilfields and the Islamic world's massive oil wealth to prevent them from using those resources to wage jihad perpetually against the non-Islamic world. Indeed, we have a legitimate self-defensive right to do all those things.