The Jarring Mission

Begin describes the recent struggles within the Government. He first discusses the U.S. -Israel relationship and how it needs constant clarification. However, positive change in the relationship happened. Begin describes the decisions made in 1970 regarding Dr. Gunnar Jarring’s peace efforts based on the Rogers Initiative. Ultimately, the U.S. agreed with Israel’s views, including William Rogers. Begin then shares that in Rabin’s most recent trip to Israel, he did not visit his superior, Foreign Minister Abba Eban. A reason for this could be because documents Rabin marked as “Top Secret” were handed over for publication. Begin contemplates who could have leaked the documents and believes it is a national scandal with serious international repercussions. Begin then goes into more detail how it is problematic that Ministers publically share their voting decisions. Begin fears that “administration which acts in this matter is endangering the foundations of Israel’s statehood.”

By Our Present Stand We Assure Israel a Future and Peace

The interview with Begin focuses on his political perspectives and experiences. The introduction positively describes Begin and emphasizes how people think he has changed. The first question asked is about the relationship between Etzel agreeing to work with the Haganah, and Gahal agreeing to a Government of National Unity. Begin explains the differences between both situations. However, the main similarity is the purpose: Salvation of the nation. Begin then discusses his experiences while being in “Opposition.” He talks about the importance in stating that it is a historic right for Judea and Samaria to be part of Israel, however, he emphasizes that he will not initiate war. He spends time defining political terms such as “left,” “right,” “socialists,” and “progressives.” He identifies some of these groups as anti-Israeli and therefore, also anti-Semitic. The interview ends with Begin sharing his beliefs about peace. He is confident that peace will someday come.

We Must Act to Avert it in Time

Begin writes about Ben Gurion’s continuous attacks on Prime Minister Levi Eshkol. Ben Gurion claimed that “Mr. Eshkol cannot conduct the affairs of the State and its security.” Some are frustrated with Ben Gurion’s behavior and believe that the new Government should not be attacked and criticized. Begin, however, believes that the Opposition not only has a right, it also has a democratic duty to oppose the Government’s decisions. Then Begin mentions that the Knesset can formulate a new Government if they do not have confidence in the current Government. In order for the Knesset to do this, there needs to be cooperation between the Opposition groups, meaning Gahal and Rafi. Begin, however, mentions that he does not think that Rafi members are genuine in their public affirmations that Rafi and Gahal could cooperate. Furthermore, Begin strongly states that Gahal does not want to cooperate with any party who thinks that Gahal is evil and sins.

The Mapai We Knew for 30 Years is No More

Begin writes about the splintering of Mapai into three, four, and even maybe five Mapais. He explains who each of these Mapais is and what each thinks of the other Mapais. Begin then puts to question the trustworthiness of leaders who express hatred towards former friends, colleagues, and comrades. Furthermore, he brings up what it could mean about the historical opposition to these leaders. Then Begin shares that there are two principal Mapais, which he calls Alef and Bet and are led respectively by Levi Eshkol and David Ben Gurion. He explains what each bloc wants regarding the election process. Begin shifts to speak about Mapai’s attempts in excluding Herut from Histadrut elections and the justice system being on Herut’s side. In his conclusion, Begin explains that Herut-Liberal bloc will attack the Mapai blocs simultaneously in hopes to change the leadership of the State.

Two Urgent Matters

Begin discusses the decision to surrender the Beit Safafa neighborhood to the Jordanians and the mistreatment of the Bnei Israel community by the chief rabbinate.