#134 Israel + Egypt Peace Treaty of 1978
#134 Israel + Egypt Peace Treaty of 1978
In this lesson you will study a major turning point in the history of Israel and the Middle East. In 1978, U.S. President Jimmy Carter invited the Prime Minister of Israel (Menachem Begin) and the President of Egypt (Anwar Sadat) to a meeting at Camp David. At that meeting, the Israel/Egypt Peace Treaty was formed and still holds today. The picture on the left shows the three leaders making the peace deal.
#1 KNOW THIS: Useful Vocabulary + Personalities
Jimmy Carter (born October 1, 1924) is an American politician, author, and member of the Democratic Party who served as the39th President of the United States from 1977 to 1981. He was awarded the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize. Carter, raised in rural Georgia, was a peanut farmer who served two terms as a Georgia State Senator, from 1963 to 1967, and one as theGovernor of Georgia, from 1971 to 1975. He was elected President in 1976, defeating incumbent president Gerald Ford in a relatively close election, running as an outsider who promised truth in government in the wake of the Watergate scandal. He is the second oldest (after George H. W. Bush) of America’s four living former presidents.
Menachem Begin (16 August 1913 – 9 March 1992) was an Israeli politician, founder of Likud and the sixth Prime Minister of the State of Israel. Before the creation of the state of Israel, he was the leader of the Zionist militant group Irgun, the Revisionist breakaway from the larger Jewish paramilitary organization Haganah. He proclaimed a revolt, on 1 February 1944, against the British mandatory government, which was opposed by the Jewish Agency. As head of the Irgun, he targeted the British in Palestine. During his leadership Irgun targeted the Arabs in the Deir Yassin massacre.
Anwar Sadat (25 December 1918 – 6 October 1981) was the third President of Egypt, serving from 15 October 1970 until his assassination by fundamentalist army officers on 6 October 1981. In his eleven years as president, he changed Egypt‘s trajectory, departing from many of the political, and economic tenets of Nasserism, re-instituting a multi-party system, and launching the Infitah economic policy. As President, he led Egypt in the Yom Kippur War of 1973 to regain Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, which Israel had occupied since the Six-Day War of 1967, making him a hero in Egypt and, for a time, the wider Arab World. Afterwards, he engaged in negotiations with Israel, culminating in the Egypt–Israel Peace Treaty; this won him and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin the Nobel Peace Prize, making Sadat the first Muslim Nobel laureate.
#2. STUDY THIS: Why did Israel and Egypt need a Peace Treaty?
The Peace treaty was signed by Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin in Washington, D.C., United States, on 26 March 1979, following the Camp David Accords (1978). Both Sadat and Begin were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for creating the treaty. In his acceptance speech, Sadat referred to the long awaited peace desired by both Arabs and Israelis:
Let us put an end to wars, let us reshape life on the solid basis of equity and truth. And it is this call, which reflected the will of the Egyptian people, of the great majority of the Arab and Israeli peoples, and indeed of millions of men, women, and children around the world that you are today honoring. And these hundreds of millions will judge to what extent every responsible leader in the Middle East has responded to the hopes of mankind.
The main features of the agreement were the mutual recognition of each country by the other, the cessation of the state of war that had existed since the1948 Arab–Israeli War, and the complete withdrawal by Israel of its armed forces and civilians from the rest of the Sinai Peninsula, which Israel had captured during the 1967 Six-Day War.
The agreement also provided for the free passage of Israeli ships through the Suez Canal and recognition of the Strait of Tiran and the Gulf of Aqaba as international waterways. The agreement notably made Egypt the first Arab country to officially recognize Israel. The peace agreement between Egypt and Israel has remained in effect since the treaty was signed.
#3. WATCH. The Changing Borders of Israel and Egypt Throughout History
#4 READ: What “really” happened at Camp David?
Camp David is the country retreat of the President of the United States. It is located in wooded hills about 62 miles (100 km) north-northwest of Washington, D.C., in Catoctin Mountain Park near Thurmont, Maryland. It is officially known as Naval Support Facility Thurmontand is technically a military installation; staffing is primarily provided by the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps.
Carter’s peace process had three main objectives for Arab-Israeli peace: Arab recognition of Israel’s right to exist in peace, Israel’s withdrawal from occupied territories gained in the Six Day War through negotiating efforts with neighboring Arab nations to ensure that Israel’s security would not be threatened and securing an undivided Jerusalem. The Camp David Accords were the result of 14 months of diplomatic efforts by Egypt, Israel, and the United States that began after Jimmy Carter became President. The efforts initially focused on a comprehensive resolution of disputes between Israel and the Arab countries, gradually evolved into a search for a bilateral agreement between Israel and Egypt.
#5: WATCH : The 1978 Camp David Peace Accord
#6 RESPOND AND REACT
1. The 1978 Peace Accord is between what two nations?
2. Who were the three international leaders at the Peace table and what countries did they represent?
3. Why was there a need for a Peace Treaty?
4. What the name of the “camp” where the details of the peace accord were discussed?
5. What award did the Israeli and Egyptian leaders receive after the Accord was signed?
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