Menahem Begin – Likud Party Winner, Israeli Elections

A television interview for ABC News. After he is elected but before he assumes office Begin already faces disagreements with the Carter Administration, with Clark and Seamans asking about those disagreements and his commitment to peace. Carter says Israel should withdraw from nearly all of the territories captured in 1967 while Begin says Judea and Samaria are integral and permanent part of Israel and there is existential danger in giving them up. Begin insists he is willing to negotiate peace with all Arab countries but not the PLO. When challenged over possibly losing American economic and military aid Begin counters that the relationship with America is mutually beneficial. Israel is keeping Communism out of the Middle East, Begin says.

We Can Look Forward With Confidence

Begin looks forward to future negotiations and the continuing relationship with the US under Jimmy Carter’s presidency. He looks back on the faults of Kissinger as Secretary of State as well as Prime Minister Rabin. He hopes Carter will fulfill his campaign promises of supporting Israel militarily and economically, and ensuring their spot in the UN.

The Way to Peace (1976)

Begin criticizes anyone who wishes to give back the territories of Gaza, Judea, and Samaria. He claims that Israel losing these territories would be detrimental to Israeli national security. He believes that the Soviet Union would use these territories to create a place for themselves in the Middle East, which would threaten national security greatly. Begin states his displeasure with Arafat, the Palestinians, and the PLO, calling them a murder organization.

A Hasty Word Can Shake the World

Begin mainly talks about foreign perspectives on Jewry and Israel. He provides examples of comments made by Helmut Sonnenfled, Jimmy Carter, and Bruno Kreisky. Begin then shares that there are Jews who believe that Sadat wants peace and is moderate. Begin goes into detail explaining that Sadat encourages a plan that would destroy Israel. Sadat believes Israel should retreat to the 1967 borders and that Palestinians still deserve their rights. This would lead to the destruction of Israel and with Arafat ruling over the land. Then Begin talks about how the word “dissident” has been used to describe both Zion haters and lovers. Lastly, he mentions Yitzchak Rabin’s statement that there are a group of Israelis wanting to harm the Israel- U.S. relationship, to which Begin argues subsequently harms Israel.

In Courage Lies Our Salvation

Begin criticizes the Government for acting out of fear, which Begin argues will lead to disaster. Begin then shares that Yitzchak Rabin acted irresponsibly when he announced that Sadat had transferred a third of his army to the reserves. Because of that statement, other countries will be interested in selling arms to Egypt. Begin explains that Sadat transferred soldiers to reserves not because his hopes for peace in the near future, but because of Egypt’s current economic crisis. Sadat is in fear of being overthrown. Begin shifts to talk about the poor relationship between Rabin and Ford. Regarding this land, the Government stated that Jerusalem was liberated and Judea and Samaria were conquered. Begin argues that there should not be a difference between Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria: All was liberated. He concludes with for the sake of Israel’s existence, the Government needs to be courageous and strong.