Summary of Evidence Arab-Israeli conflict '73

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Summary of Evidence

Arab-Israeli conflict '73
The Arab-Israeli conflict of 1973 was a punitive war, or revenge war, conclusions only evidence in this section. in which Egypt and Syria both hoped to regain land lost to Israel during the Six Day War in 1967. Egypt, however, was aiming at a limited war and wanting to solve the issues politically, whereas Syria was going for the total destruction of Israel and the recapture of the Golan Heights 1. The war has various names, in Israel it is called the Yom Kippur War as war broke out on the Israeli religious holiday called Yom Kippur. By Arab States it may be known as the Ramadan war or the '73 war 2 .
Sadat(egyptian president) wishing to regain the land by political means had offered a UN ultimatum to Israel asking for the return of the Sinai and the Suez Canal. When Israel disagreed to the terms, Need to greatly expand on this topic Sadat decided that the only way to solve the issue was militarily and sought the help of Assad(leader of Syria), as it was known that Assad was not very fond of Israel.

Sadat and Assad had to be very secretive with their planning as they wanted to catch Israel by surprize.
Not only was Israel caught by surprise, so was Syria. Syria was under the impression that both Syria and Egypt were engaging in a full scale war, however, Egypt had long since deicide on a limited war deceiving Syria into helping them. This was done by the Egyptians military leaders drawing up to plans of actions. One which Egypt would actually use in the war and the other was a placebo to ensure Syria's commitment to the war. Relevance to cause?
The first plan of action which was actually used in the war, entailed Egyptian troops mobilizing on the banks of the Suez Canal and marching 10 km into Israel where the troops would still be under the cover of Egyptian missiles. Sadat is quoted saying “If you can get back ten centimeters of Sinai i can solve the problem.” The other plan entailed Egyptian troops marching 45-50 km into Israel and engaging in full scale war.

You need to work on your structure to clearly identify possible causes to the war. Try to have one cause per paragraph. In this paragraph you have a number of different causes.

Through this war Assad wished for Syria to become the predominant military power in the Middle East. Good SOC By demolishing the state of Israel Assad would be a hero in the eyes of the Arab leaders, as Israel has the strongest army in the region, defeating them would be like Oedipus solving the riddle of the Sphinx. Assad had no intentions of gaining back “his” lost land by negotiation, his mind was made up and he wanted to see the total destruction Israel. Need more evidence in this section but good start

King Hussein had a minor role to play in this war as he was the first person to warn the Israeli Prime Minister that Egypt and Syria were up to something, however, his warnings fell on deaf ears.

Sadat was unpopular amongst Egyptian people.

for wanting to solve the issue politically and by use of a limited war. For Sadat being victorious in this war meant that he would gain the trust and respect of the Egyptian peoples, thus, increasing his popularity. Sadat believed that reasoning behind poor Egyptian morale was due to the embarrassment of losing the Six Day War, not only losing the war but losing land to Israel as well. Therefore the Yom Kippur war was unavoidable as Sadat wanted lift the morale of the Egyptian peoples as well giving Israel as scare into solving the issue politically. This was first and for most a war of revenge. Need specific evidence in this section: do have speeches riots, economic statistics, use of force to maintain power, censorship etc. Need evidence to indicate he was unpopular

A major concern is the lack of specific citation. You need to cite ever piece of evidence in your H.I.

Also you need to get information on a number of categories not mentioned – foreign influence or role of the superpowers, historical grievances, failure of diplomacy, military strength.


To What extent was Sadat's inability to reach a political settlement with Israel the cause of the 1973 War?

One of the main causes of the Yom Kippur War-1973 War, October War- was Anwar El- Sadat's inability to reach a political settlement with Israel over the Sinai and Gaza Strip. Moreso than his political handicaps one is lead to believe that it was Sadat's ambition to reach a peace In 1970 on the 28th of September Egypt found itself to be without a president. Gamal Abdel Nasser – one of Egypts most loved rulers of the 20th century- died on this date of a sudden heart attack. His successor was Anwar El- Sadat – the Vice President. All of those officials in power during Nasser's reign were convinced that Sadat would follow all that they would say and merely be their poster boy as he had kept pretty much to himself as of late. These Officials were under the impression that Sadat would keep on inforcing Nasser's pan-arabic and pro- Soviet Policies. Little did they know that Sadat's aims where far from that they thought possible. One of the first signs of Sadat's aim to move alliances was after Nasser's funeral, when he called Elliot Richardson (the head of the US delegation at Nasser's funeral) to his bedside. Richardson recalls: 'He began by telling me that he appreciated the United States sendng a relatively senior delegation and that he wanted to thank President Nixon for having done so. He connveyed a clear feeling that he wanted to take advandtage of this oppertunity to turn a new page in the relationship between our countries.' By calling Richardson to his bedside Sadat showed that he was ready and willing to shift the alliance that Nasser had built with the Soviets to a new alliance with the Americans.

By establishing a relationship with the United States Sadat would turn against all that was expected of him. He would not only go against the Soviets but he would also go against his Arab brethren by making a move to a peace agreement with Israel. The official meeting between Egypt and the United States was done in secret due to Sadat being under careful watch by the Ali Sabri group, who were as pro-Soviet as they come, and extremely powerful. The meeting took place on the 11th of January in 1971 in a villa, in Cairo. The two men present at the meeting were General Amin and Eugene Trone – who incidently was the head of CIA in Cairo. In the meeting General Amin anounced that "Sadat was different from Nasser and was ready to make peace. If Israel would agree to retreat 30 miles from Suez, Egypt would re-open the Suez Canal." The opening of the Canal would be very useful to Eygypt as it would help boost their economy as they could tax any ships passing through. By anouncing that Egypt was willing to recognize and make peace with Israel Sadat had shown the United States that he was serious about his wanting a new relationship with them at the same time being the pioneer of peace in the Middle East. On the 4th of February of that year Sadat made it public knowledge of his ambitions of peace with Israel. By making this anouncement Sadat put a lot at stake, he had exposed himself to his officials. Five days after his anouncement the Prime Minister of Israel Golda Meir, did not blankly disregard Sadat's attmepts at a peace proposal, however, she did not make a concerted effort to take part in further discussions. Therefor pretty much throwing Sadat's attempts of negociation out the window.

The first "high-level" meeting between Egypt and the USA since 1967 took place on the 23rd of February 1973. This was between the National Security Advisor of Egypt, Hafiz Ismail, and US President Richard Nixon. Despite this historic meeting, Sadat's hopes were aimed towards a secret meeting between Henry Kissinger and Hafiz Ismail. During this meeting Ismail stated that he wished for Israel to return to the 1967 borders, and if the agree then Egypt would be willing to partake in peace talks between the two great nations. Kissinger, however, did not take him seriously, he was under the impression that Sadat was bluffing. Israel too felt that all of Sadat's talk of Peace between the two countries was fiction. It is said that during that meeting Kissinger had said, 'I cannot deal with your problem unless it becomes a crisis'. Sadat felt that Kissinger was encouraging him to go to war with Israel, and that all political means to solve the problem had disintergrated. War, ironically, was the only other way in which they could make peace.

To Sadat a limited war seemed fitting, he is quoted saying 'If you get back ten centimeters of Sinai, I can solve the problem.' This not only showed that he did not want the elimination of Israel, but also showed that he was willing to enter into further discussions if Israel was willing. Most of Sadats ministers made it known that they were not very sure about going to war, Sadat replied ' we will simply have to use our talents and planning to compensate for our lack of equipment.' Sadat and his men did do a lot of planning, the had to coordinate an Egyptian-Syrian attack, to get Israel from both sides. Still, Syria would not agree to a limited war, as Assad President of Syria was aiming at the complete elimination of Israel and was wanting to establish Syria as one of the most powerful armies in the Middle East. In decieving Syria, Egypt had forever hindered its reputation amongst its Arab brethren, forever to be called the traitor for making peace with Israel.

In conclusion, the extent of Sadats inability to negociate a political settlement with Israel of being the cause of this war is not great. A cause that betters this one was/is Sadat's goal of reclaiming the land lost to Egypt in the Six Day War. The Peace settlement was merely the cherry on top of the cake.settlement that drove him to go to war against Israel.


fifty years of war, Ahron Bregman, Jihan Al-Tahri 1998 p115

British World Book Encyclopedia, "E", Egypt -1973 Arab – Israeli conflict
Bristish World Book Encyclopedia, "I", Israel, Yom Kippur War.
Fifty Years of War, Ahron Bregman, Jihan Al-Tahri, 1998 114
Fifty Years of War, Ahron Bregman, Jihan Al-Tahri, 1998 106- 113
Fifty Years of War, Ahron Bregman, Jihan Al-Tahri, 1998 116-118

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