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.

What Peace With Abdullah Means

In this translation of a speech given by Menachem Begin in the Knesset on January 2nd, 1950, Begin criticizes Mr. Sharett for his positions on Israel’s foreign affairs. He criticizes Sharett for wanting to make a peace treaty with King Abdullah. According to Begin, making peace with Abdullah means turning “the wheel of history backwards,” by bringing British power back into the state of Israel. It would also mean recognition that Abdullah is justified in occupying certain areas of Israel that he has occupied, including the Old City of Jerusalem. Begin also expands on the fact that Sharett and his colleagues are responsible for the alienation of Israel and for no longer having aid from the other Powers such as Russia, America, and France. Begin encourages his listeners to proclaim Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and states that whether people are for or against it, there is no change in his agenda.

Beigin Sums Up

Begin addresses the Knesset focusing on topics important for the future of Israel. Begin first emphasizes the importance for the State to have a constitution. Begin then talks about the condition of Israel’s economy. He specifically talks about the fault of Ben-Gurion depending on Diaspora funds and private capital. Additionally, Begin mentions how the change in currency does not financially benefit Israel; it is simply following England’s lead. Then Begin discusses the issues of unemployment and standard of living. He mentions how the nation is starving, which directly affects labor productivity, which leads to lack of housing for immigrants. Begin touches upon Jews endangered in Arab countries and how Ben-Gurion is not taking any action to protect them. Lastly, Begin goes into detail about the importance of Jerusalem being undivided and the capital for Israel and provides a draft law for Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel.

Speech at Knesset 9.11.49

A speech Begin gave at the Knesset in 1949. The Government has been acting very undemocratically in preventing discussion on the writing of a constitution for the new State of Israel. The budget and the deficit of the new State are enormous, putting the economy at risk. Unfortunately there is little concrete investment in Israel and the charity of the Diaspora Jewish communities is not enough. Herut warned of the need to rescue the Jews in Arab countries from anti-Jewish violence and was ignored, and now that the government is finally responding to the problem it may be too late. The Arabs and other nations are making territorial claims against Israel, and Israel should make territorial claims in response, for all of Eretz Israel should be part of Israel by right. The government should resign in light of the above offences and mistakes. The Herut proposes a law for Jerusalem as the eternal and undivided capital of Israel.

Meet the Press Interview with Menachem Begin 1948

An interview Begin gave on Meet the Press in New York in 1948. Begin apologizes for his poor English. He is in America on a goodwill mission on behalf of those who fought for liberation against the British and will be returning to Israel before the elections for the constituent assembly, in which he is running on the Herut list. Etzel turned its guns over to the Israeli government when told to and will not raise any arms against a Jewish government. Begin did not meet Col. David Marcus, but he considers him to be a hero and a great commander. Herut has members from Israel’s non-Jewish minorities and does not have a policy of racial exclusion. The UN has utterly failed to live up to its vision, but Begin prays it will become the organization it was meant to be. Herut does not object to the Histadrut or any other labor unions existing, but it does object to the Histadrut also employing the workers in addition to being a union.