Comment and Opinion

Moshe Arens – 11/10/2011

“The Middle East peace process began on October 24, 1973, eighteen days after Israel was caught by surprise by Egyptian and Syrian attacks from the south and the north – attacks that scored substantial advances during the first 48 hours of fighting. But by October 24, when the fighting ceased, the Israel Defense Forces stood 101 kilometers from Cairo and 40 kilometers from Damascus, and the Egyptian Third Army was completely encircled east of the Suez Canal.

It was a terrible war for Israel – and yet, a great victory. What the IDF’s victories in 1949, 1956 and again in 1967 had not been able to accomplish was achieved in the Yom Kippur War. Now, Egypt was eager to negotiate a peace treaty with Israel. The Egyptian leadership concluded that Arab armies stood no chance of beating Israel on the battlefield, and the time had come for peace. It took another four years for negotiations to begin, and a further two years for the Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty to be signed. The Middle East peace process moves at a glacial pace.”

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