At a Speech to the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Begin stated that the peace treaty with Egypt precedes all previous agreements between the two countries, and urged sympathy for Sadat’s hostile situation within the Arab world. Begin then emphasized the importance of the Israeli people’s support for the peace treaty, saying that it will be presented to the Knesset for approval regardless of party discipline. Later, he explained how the US government’s peace proposals to King Hussein included departures from the Camp David Accords, in matters such as the legal status of Jerusalem, the IDF presence in Judea and Samaria, the establishment of settlements and the autonomy plan. Finally, Begin noted the sacrifices Israel had made for the sake of peace, including evacuation of settlements and the waiver of the Sinai Peninsula.
Begin addressed the halting of settlement construction for the duration of the Palestinian negotiations in an interview shortly after the Camp David Accords were signed, noting a difference of opinion with the US government on the matter. Begin outlined the autonomy plan’s fundamental elements and defended the morality of Judea and Samaria’s settlements, expressing a wish to end military authority in the region. Later, Begin considered the prospect of negotiating a peace treaty with Jordan and other Arab countries, saying that Egyptian-Israeli relations and the Palestinian Arabs’ solution are not interwoven.
Subsequently, Begin emphasized his desire to follow in the footsteps of Camp David and use the US government’s aid in drafting a peace pact. He proposed providing facilities for the US navy in the Mediterranean and establishing US bases in Sinai, but denied the conception of stationing US soldiers in Judea and Samaria so that Israel could defend itself independently against its surrounding enemies. However, he noted that Israel sought military assistance from the US in order to do so, acknowledging Israel’s contribution to US national security. Begin went on to discuss his Camp David experiences, his impressions of Carter as a negotiator, and the sticking points in the negotiations over the legal status of Jerusalem.
An “NBC” news report covering the Camp David Accords, including reactions from Begin, President Sadat, locals on both sides, and pundits.
Begin is interviewed by Al Anba, a pro-Government Arabic paper, regarding the upcoming Camp David talks. In this interview he first states that it should be up to the conflicting parties to settle their differences, and therefore the U.S. should not be considered a “full partner.” Begin argues for the necessity of Israel and its neighbors to sign peace treaties. Furthermore, the peace plan should be a result of free negotiations and not a peace plan proposed by the U.S. Begin then mentions that it will be beneficial for Israel, Egypt, and the U.S. if the upcoming meetings are successful. He concludes that settlements are not an obstacle to peace because Israel’s peace plan involves living together with Arabs.
In our peace proposal we suggested that a second, narrow United Nations zone be created in the northern Sinai around the district of Yamit—a new town founded several years ago in the desert by the sea-shore. May I point out that the two proposed UN zones—conceived as vital to our national security—make up hardly move … Continued