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November 13, 1987 - Image 132

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-11-13

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Begin, Carter and Sadat confer at Camp David: Sadat's 1977 visit to
Israel paved the way for the 1978 peace treaty.

Sadat's 1977 Visit
Shook The Mideast

Hucksters, peddlers and
souvenir-sellers prepared to
reap a golden harvest.
When Sadat's plane ap-
t 8:03 p.m. on Satur-
in the sky, tens of
day, November 19,
thousands of Israelis were
1977, Anwar el-Sadat,
surrounding the security zone
President of Arab Republic of
at Ben-Gurion airport, Arabs
Egypt, disembarked from a
and Jews mingling happily.
plane _ emblazoned with the
The crowd included more
Egyptian flag that had
than a thousand reporters
brought him to Ben-Gurion
and photographers, some
airport from the Egyptian air
from far corners of the world.
base of Abu Suweir, and
Hundreds of thousands of
stepped foot onto the soil of
men, women and children
lined the road for hours, hop-
Thus began one of the most
ing to see the Sadat en-
dramatic chapters in the
tourage on its way to
history of the Jewish state, a
prelude to the signing of the
As the Egyptian President
first peace treaty between
stepped out of his plane, he
Jews and Egyptians in the
was greeted by a fanfare of
several thousand years since
trumpets and the cheers of
the Exodus.
what local historians termed
On this tenth anniversary,
a record-breaking crowd.
it is well to note that
Reporters noted that Sadat
although the relationship bet-
was visibly moved. His eyes
ween the two countries is not
were moist, his mouth was
perfect, the treaty signed
tight and his hand shook
after the Camp David
slightly as he saluted.
meetings by Sadat and Prime
He was welcomed by Presi-
Minister Menachem Begin
dent Ephraim Katzir and
still holds. And as long as it
Prime Minister Menachem
continues to be respected,
Begin, who extended his
another all-out war between
hand and said, "It's wonder-
Israel and her neighbors is
ful to have you here. Thank
impossible. For without Egyp-
you for coming!" to which
tian collaboration, no other
Sadat replied: "Thank you.
Arab power, acting alone, can
Thank you!"
seriously threaten the future
On his way to the limousine
of the Jewish state.
that would take him to his
Sadat's announcement to
suite in the King David Hotel
his own Parliament on
in Jerusalem, Sadat went
November 9 had electrified
down a receiving line and en-
the entire Middle East. For
thusiastically shook hands
the next ten days all of Israel
with men whom he had once
worked to prepare for the
declared were his worst
historic visit.
enemies: Yitzhak Rabin,
Hundreds of thousands of
former Prime Minister, who
Egyptian flags were hurried-
had planned the Six-Day War;
ly manufactured. Pastry
Moshe Dayan, who had been
cooks baked cakes showing
Minister of Defense during
Arabs and Jews in loving em-
the Yom Kippur War, and
brace. T-shirts miraculously
General Arik Sharon, who
appeared, decorated with
had become an Israeli hero in
likenesses of Sadat and
1973 for his success in
Begin. One T-shirt read: "We
leading Israeli troops across
are sons of one father,
the Suez Canal into Egypt.
Abraham." Another: "All we
When Sadat shook hands
need is love."
with Golda Meir, he said to


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