Begin on the Justice of Zionism

A speech Begin gave in America in 1972. The world wants to forget, but Israel and the Jews will not forget how the Arab armies massed on Israel’s borders with the declared intention of destroying the Jewish State. Thankfully Israel was wise enough to launch a preemptive strike and come out of the war with relatively few casualties and more territory. There are those who say Israel should give back virtually all of the land, but doing so would put Israel’s population centers in the range of the rockets and artillery of the enemy. The PLO and similar organizations attempt to carry out a genocide of Jews, as evidenced by their attacks on civilians and by their own statements. But Jews should never be afraid any more. Israel spends nearly a third of its GNP on defense, and so needs the aid of American Jewry. With their help, Israel and world Jewry will be preserved for eternity.

The Way to Peace (1971)

In response to threats issued by President Anwar Sadat, Begin here compares the Soviet-Egyptian treaty to the Molotov-Ribbentrop treaty and urges Jewish unity. He closes by reiterating Gahal’s platform, which he terms an alternative to withdrawal from territory: direct negotiations, no prior obligations, and maintaining the situation at the time of the ceasefire until a full peace treaty is concluded.

An Open Letter to Brezhnev

Begin writes an open letter to Leonid Brezhnev, the first secretary of the Communist Party in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. In this letter, Begin writes about his and the Jewish people’s relationship with Russia throughout the years. Ultimately, he explains that the purpose of his open letter is to discuss a false report the journalists’ union posted about Deir Yassin. He is frustrated that the Etzel is portrayed as a gang, when it was really a liberation organization. Begin argues that the Soviet Union is changing facts so that “white has become black and black has become white.” He points out that leaders during the time of Etzel believed that a Jewish State should exist. He briefly mentions his disgust towards the verdicts of the Leningrad trials and in his conclusion says that Russian justice is actually unjust.

Make Conversion Easier

Begin speaks to the Knesset about Jewish and other nationalities in Israel. He emphasizes that one does not need to have to be Jewish to be a free citizen with equal rights in Israel. He also emphasizes that there is not a separation between Jewish nationhood and religion. Begin starts his speech showing that there can be a democratic State consisting of different nationalities. Because of Jewish history, Israel is sensitive to minorities living in Israel. Furthermore, Begin wants to prove that Judaism is far from racist. Then he shares that Herzl understood the intertwining between Jewish nationhood and religion. Begin points out that this connection can also be seen in the Bible. Begin argues that assimilation and intermarriage affects who is a Jew. There are people who are connected to Judaism, but are not considered Jewish. For the sake of these people, he argues, conversion should be made easier.

The Magnificent Emergency

Article by Begin for Yom Haatzmaut (Israel Independence Day) 1968, recounting the events that had transpired since the previous Independence Day. On Yom Haatzmaut 1967, even as Jews were both mourning the Holocaust and celebrating the resurgence of their people Israel, Colonel Nasser of Egypt ordered his troops to go into the Northern Sinai Peninsula. Soon the combined forces of three large Arab armies from Egypt, Syria, and Jordan surrounded Israel. Israel still won and took the Suez Canal, but Nasser was still spouting the same rhetoric a year after the war. Other Arab leaders made similar declarations about their intent to destroy Israel, in Syria, Iraq, and Jordan. Israel is in a state of “magnificent emergency” where it is under threat but has great opportunities to settle and claim its land. To this end Israel needs another mass aliyah from western Jewry and to initiate economic reforms to ensure a free market and economic growth that westerners expect.