16th to 8th Century BCE
G-d promises Jews a great nation in return for observance of belief and practice of laws.
Liturgical References to Zion and Jerusalem
The Hebrew Bible, Prophetic Books, the Talmud, the daily prayer book, and ancient Jewish texts reinforce Judaism’s relationship to G-d and Eretz Yisrael.
The Jewish State, Theodor Herzl
Eventual head of the World Zionist Organization, Theodor Herzl says anti-Semitism requires a Jewish state.
Max Nordau, Address at the First Zionist Congress, Basel Switzerland
Max Nordau earned a medical degree and, like his friend Theodore Herzl, became a devout Zionist. He attended the first Zionist Congress in Basle, Switzerland in August 1897; delivering an impassioned speech about the general Jewish condition in Europe. Nordau’s engagement in the Zionist organization in its early years induced many Jewish intellectuals to follow suit.
October 24, 1915
The Sherif of Mecca and a British official in Cairo exchanged letters about the current war effort against the Turks, and the future political status of specific Arab lands in Ottoman Empire.
May 15-16, 1916
Britain and France secretly divide the Arab provinces of the former Ottoman Empire to meet their own geopolitical interests; no concern offered to political aspirations of indigenous populations.
November 2, 1917
British Foreign Ministry promises to set up a Jewish National Home in Palestine with no harm to non-Jewish populations, or to Jews living elsewhere who might want to support a Jewish home.
Emir Feisal – Chaim Weizmann Correspondences
January 1919 – March 1919
Emir Feisal, acting on behalf of Sherif of Mecca and Chaim Weizmann on behalf of the Zionist Organization exchange recognition of cordiality and kinship between a future Arab state and Palestine, where Zionists seek to establish their national home. Mutual assistance is offered by one of the other.
1922 White Paper on Palestine
(July 1922) Hurewitz, J.C. The Middle East and North Africa in World Politics, A Documentary Record . 2nd, Revised and Enlarged ed. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1979. 301-5. Print. Vol. 2 of British-French Supremacy. In September 1920, the first High Commissioner for Palestine, Sir Herbert Samuel, gave effect to the implementation of the […]
The Mandate for Palestine
July 24, 1922
International legitimacy is granted to establish a Jewish National Home in Palestine. Rules for its establishment clearly give Jews in Palestine distinct advantages over the local Arab population.
Zirin Village Land Sales
August 16, 1930
The sale of Zirin Village to the Jewish National Fund was collusively undertaken by a local Arab family through the British Courts in Palestine. The process intentionally avoided financial compensation to the resident Arab occupants.
Systematic Agricultural Colonization in Palestine
1934 J. Elazari – Volcani (Issac Vilkanski) SYSTEMATIC AGRICULTURAL COLONIZATION IN PALESTINE REPORT PRESENTED AT THE XVIIITH ZIONIST CONGRESS PRAGUE, 1933 Special Printing from the Protocol of the XVIIIth Zionist Congress 1934 Published by the Zionist Central Bureau 77 Great Russell Street, London W.C. 1 The complete protocol of the XVIIIth Zionist Congress together […]
Peel Commission Report
After outbreak of communal violence, the British investigatory committee suggests partition of Palestine, seeking to create two states for two peoples.
The Political Significance of Land Purchase – 1937
December 31, 1937
With more Arab sale offers than funds for purchases, Zionist leaders decide on strategic priorities and designate areas around Haifa, Jerusalem-Jaffa road, and the Galilee near headwaters of the
Chaim Weizmann’s Notes for Speech, “Rallying World Jewry to Partition”
January 23, 1938
After the British suggested partition of Palestine into two states in July 1937, Weizmann, among Zionists, was least opposed to a Jewish state in less than all of western Palestine.
Arab Leaders Meeting in Damascus
September 30, 1938
This document was secured at the Central Zionist Archives in Jerusalem. Five months before Hitler invaded Poland, Arab leaders with an interest in Palestine are starkly disappointed that the the German government did not go to war against the Zionists in Palestine. The same leaders give the Zionist national builders high marks for their perseverance against terrorist bands in the Palestinian countryside. They worry that unless Arab states come to the Palestinians’ assistance, Palestine will be lost to the Zionists. A remarkable assessment for Palestinian Arab leaders and their supporters.
Gershon Agronsky: “Palestine Arab Economy Undermined by Disturbances”
January 20, 1939
Agronsky’s clear assessment of 1936-1939 disturbances provides a graphic description of the devastation caused to Palestine’s rural economy and to the majority Arab population.
The Mufti’s Decision to Reject a Majority Palestinian State
Mufti opposes Arab majority state in ten years contrary to wishes of a dozen key other Palestinian leaders. Mufti wants no Jewish political presence in Palestine whatsoever.
HMG White Paper: Statement of Policy
Zionist leaders—David Ben-Gurion, Chaim Weizmann and Eliezer Kaplan—learning of the British intent to limit severely the Jewish national home’s growth. Increasingly, they are also aware of the German government’s hostilities towards European Jewry.
Remarks by the Right Honorable Winston Churchill
May 23, 1939
Over four decades, Winston Churchill’s views on Zionism and Jews varied greatly. Without knowing his long held personal beliefs or the policies he adopted while the Jewish state developed, and only reading this speech, one would not know that he was a political opportunist and certainly not a “Gentile Zionist.”
The Biltmore Program
May 11, 1942
In New York, urging American (Jewish) support, Ben-Gurion proclaims the eventual establishment of a Jewish state.
Sir Harold MacMichael, High Commissioner of Palestine to Oliver Stanley, Colonial Secretary of HMG, Jerusalem
July 17, 1944
Before ending his term in 1944 as Palestine's High Commissioner, Sir Harold MacMichael suggested the partition of Palestine, "Jews and Arabs alike would enjoy the possession of their own respective territories, the former protected by international guarantees for their security, and the latter relieved from fear of further encroachments."
Jewish Request at the End of WWII: Let My People Go [to Palestine]!
May 13, 1945
Moshe Sharett urges British and US to open Palestine to unimpeded Jewish immigration from
Land Transfer Inquiry Committee Report
Circumventing the existing law on prohibition of land sales to Jews, Palestinian Arabs are found selling lands regularly and furtively to Zionists.
The Arab Case for Palestine, The Arab Office
During the 1940s, Arab states become increasingly opposed to Jewish immigration and settlement in Palestine. Zionism is vigorously opposed. Arab state views are expressed before a post war American-British inquiry on Palestine's future.
1947 Truman Doctrine
Fearing Communist penetration of the Eastern Mediterranean, Truman at the beginning of the Cold War defines the region as a sphere of US national interest.
Remarks by Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko to the UN Special Committee on Palestine
May 14, 1947
Despite an officially anti-Zionist stance, Stalin’s administration endorsed the partition of Palestine in order to terminate British presence there, leaving the area open to Moscow’s penetration and influence.
Report of the UN Special Committee on Palestine [UNSCOP], Summary
August 31, 1947
The research and highly dedicated investigations of the UNSCOP committee provided the UN with the choice of two-state and federal solutions to the Palestine issue.
Abdulrahman ‘Azzam Pasha Rejects Any Compromise with Zionists
The head of Arab League says Palestine may be lost in a confrontation with the Zionists, but emphatically states that war is the Arab’s only option.
UNGA (Palestine Partition) Resolution
November 29, 1947
The UN decides Arab and Jewish states should be created as a solution to the Arab-Zionist conflict. The Plan calls for an economic union of the two states and an international regime to be set up for Jerusalem.
US Government’s Position on the Future of Palestine
February 24, 1948
In March 1948, two months before Israel’s establishment, the US State Department sought to reverse the US vote in favor of partition for the creation of Arab and Jewish states in Palestine. Zionist diplomats worked feverishly at the UN, London and in Washington to prevent the US policy reversal. Why did the US State Department oppose so vigorously the Jewish state’s creation already from the 1940s forward? Besides the State Department’s well-documented institutional anti-Semitism practiced in preventing Jewish immigration to the states in the 1930s and 1940s, there were enormously strong feelings that a Jewish state would alienate American support from Arab states, especially Saudi Arabia.
Israel Declaration of Independence
May 14, 1948
May 14, 1948: The Declaration recounts the Jewish connection to the land of Israel, the birth of Zionism, and recognition by the UN of a Jewish state’s legitimacy. It also promises that the state will be a democracy for all its citizens.
Proposed Constitution for the State of Israel
December 10, 1948
Israel’s proposed written constitution was never ratified though it spoke eloquently about protecting individual, religious, and civil rights for all. Instead individual civil rights in Israel were protected by a series of Basic Laws.
UN General Assembly Resolution 194 Concerning Palestinian Refugees
December 11, 1948
The resolution states that refugees “wishing to return to their homes and live at peace (with Israel) should do so or compensation be paid…” Israel opposes the idea because it jeopardizes Israel as a majority Jewish state.
Israeli-Egyptian General Armistice Agreement, Excerpts
February 24, 1949
One of four agreements Israel signed in 1949 with Arab neighbors, it does not end “state of war,” between Israel and Arab states. No treaty is signed until 1979.
Admission of Israel to the United Nations General Assembly, UNGA Resolution 273
May 11, 1949
Upon admission to the UN, Israel's Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett said, "it was
the consummation of a people's transition from political anonymity to clear identity, from inferiority to equal status, from mere passive protest to active responsibility, from exclusion to membership in the family of nations."
Israeli Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett to the Israel Knesset
June 15, 1949
Sharett gives an overview of Israeli foreign policy, key issues, and relationships with UN and Arab states.
Israel’s Law of Return
July 5, 1950
Jews worldwide are given the right to come to Israel and become citizens.
Menachem Begin on Whether to Accept Reparations from Germany
January 7, 1952
In an impassioned Knesset speech, Menachem Begin staunchly opposes accepting $1.5 billion in German reparations for Jewish deaths during WWII. No price, he believes, can be put on the lives lost.
January 5, 1957
Further reinforcing the Truman Doctrine, the US President promises military or economic aid to any Middle Eastern country resisting Communist aggression.
Statement to the Knesset by Prime Minister Ben-Gurion
February 21, 1957
In response to President Eisenhower’s demand that Israel leave Sinai, Prime Minister Ben-Gurion provides a detailed history of Israel at the UN and Egypt’s denial to Israel of use of the Suez Canal. He stresses Egyptian “injustice, discrimination, hostility, and boycott” imposed on Israel.
David Ben-Gurion’s “Vision and Redemption”
Ben-Gurion elegantly connects modern Israel from messianic redemption to Zionism, building the country through labor and immigration, with dual needs to remain actively linked to the Jewish diaspora and Jewish values through education.
Israel’s Basic Laws
12 February 1958- 12 March 2014
With no constitution, citizen rights and government responsibilities are stated in 12 laws.
PLO National Covenant
May 28, 1964
Palestine Liberation Organization seeks Israel’s destruction through armed struggle. It retains this stated policy until December 1988.
Prime Minister Levi Eshkol’s Radio Address to the Nation
May 28, 1967
With tensions on its borders, Eshkol tries to reassure Israeli public. Instead he gives a “painfully faltering” speech. Popular and party disgruntlement follow, opening the way for Eshkol to turn over the Defense Ministry two days later to General Moshe Dayan.
President Nasser Speech to the Egyptian National Assembly
May 29, 1967
Nasser asserts that the conflict with Israel is not over access to the Gulf of Aqaba but the very existence of Israel; Egypt’s foes are Britain and the US that support Israel.
Israel Ambassador to the UN Gideon Rafael to the UN Security Council
June 3, 1967
A detailed outline is presented of events that led to the June 1967 War.
Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser: Resignation Broadcast
June 9, 1967
In four days the Israeli army swept through Sinai. He acknowledged Israel’s pre-emptive strike. Nasser blamed the US and Britain for aiding Israel’s success, yet took responsibility for the Arab defeat and resigned. Immediately millions of Egyptians poured into the streets angry that he led the country to defeat, but loving him as a father, demanded that he stay as President. All the Egyptian military command resigned, but Nasser stayed in office till his death in September 1970.
Prime Minister Levi Eshkol Statement to the Knesset at Conclusion of June War
June 12, 1967
Two days after the conclusion of the June 1967 War, Eshkol, recounts the series of events that led to war, the war itself and the immediate aftermath. He reaches out to Arab states for peace seeking a path to peace with her belligerent neighbors. A week later, Israel will quietly messages Cairo and Damascus through the US, hat Israel seeks an end to the conflict. No answers are received.
Abba Eban Speech at Special Assembly of the UN, June 19, 1967
June 19, 1967
Following the conclusion of the June 1967 War, the Israeli government sent word to Egypt and Syria seeking peace plan that was intended to jumpstart a peace process with Israel’s belligerent neighbors, Egypt and Syria. The messages were sent through the US, but no response was apparently received.
The Israeli Government Designed Peace Plan Devised After the June 1967 War
June 19, 1967
Following the conclusion of the June 1967 War, the Israeli government sent word to Egypt and Syria seeking peace plan that was intended to jumpstart a peace process with Israel’s belligerent neighbors, Egypt and Syria. The messages were sent through the US, but no response was apparently received.
Lyndon Johnson’s Five Principles of Peace
June 19, 1967
President Johnson’s remarks became the philosophical outline for UN Resolution 242 passed in November 1967. Core to his view was that Israel would not need to return to the pre-1967 war borders, and that the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all states in the region should be protected.
Israeli Chief of Staff Yitzhak Rabin: The Right of Israel
June 28, 1967
Receiving an Honorary Doctorate from the Hebrew University following the conclusion of the June 1967 War, Rabin delivers a speech on behalf of Israel’s entire Defence Forces. He highlights the harsh realities of war, yet concentrates on commending the extraordinary efforts of Israel’s armed forces.
The Alon Plan
July 26, 1967
July 26, 1967: The Alon Plan reflects a response to Israel’s pre-1967 war border vulnerability seeking a future west bank arrangement that is not a strategic/geographic threat to Israel and its coastal plain population centers.
Arab League Summit Resolutions
September 1, 1967
Arab states declare “no peace, no negotiation, no recognition” with Israel after their collective defeat in the June 1967 War.
UN Security Council Resolution 242
November 22, 1967
The Resolution calls for unspecified Israel withdrawal from territories in return for right of all states to live in peace.
U.S. Secretary of State William Rogers Plan for an Arab-Israeli Settlement
October 29, 1969
Without any consultation with Jerusalem, Israel rejects US proposal for full withdrawal.
Transcript of Secret Talks between Egyptian National Security Adviser Hafez Ismail and US National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger
25-26 February 1973
October 6, 2018 marks the 45th anniversary of the outbreak of the October 1973 War. From that war, Egyptian President Sadat welcomed Secretary of State Henry Kissinger’s engagement to fashion separation of forces agreements with Israel.
The “Galili Plan”
With less than three dozen Israeli settlements in the territories taken in the June War, the proposal is not for a vast settlement increase, but for economic, infrastructure, and industrial development of the areas.
UN Security Council Resolution 338 on a Ceasefire and Direct Negotiations Following October 1973 War
October 22, 1973
The October 1973 War broke the logjam over whether diplomacy could unfold to kick-off Arab-Israeli negotiations. Sadat used the 1973 war as an engine to harness American horsepower. In that he succeeded since US Secretary of State Kissinger saw Sadat’s leaning to Washington not only as a chance to begin useful negotiations, but of great significance to weaning the Egyptian President away from Moscow.
Memorandum of Understanding between the US and Israel
January 18, 1974
The US promises to implement an Egyptian-Israeli disengagement agreement and have the Suez
Canal cleared. Israel sees eventual repopulation of Suez Canal cities as a sign that Egypt will not go to war
Israel-Egypt Separation of Forces Agreement
January 18, 1974
The US mediates an agreement separating forces in Sinai after the 1973 War; Egyptian and Israeli
generals will negotiate additional details.
“Agranat Commission” – Yom-Kippur War
The Israeli government assigns responsibility to military leaders for failures leading to and
execution of the War; though not assigned direct blame, Prime Minister Meir and Defense Minister Dayan resign in April 1974.
UN Disengagement of Forces Agreement
May 31, 1974
On Golan Heights, Israel agrees to limited withdrawal; UN places forces between Syrian and Israeli armies. With few exceptions this border remains almost totally quiet for more than forty years.
Promises about the Golan Heights’ Future by President Ford
September 1, 1975
President Ford promises that the US will give “weight” to any future Israeli peace agreement with Syria that Israel should remain in the Golan Heights.
Sinai II Accords, Egyptian-Israeli Disengagement Agreement
September 4, 1975
Cairo and Jerusalem agree to additional Sinai withdrawals, demilitarized zones, limited force zones and, importantly, placement of US civilians in Sinai to monitor observance of agreement.
US-Israeli Memorandum of Agreement Dealing with Future Negotiations
September 17, 1975
The US promises coordination with Israel on resumed negotiations, not to negotiate or recognize
the PLO until it recognizes Israel’s right to exist, and accepts UNSC Resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973).
Zionism is Racism UNGA Resolution 3379
November 10, 1975
Led by USSR and Arab states, Zionism is labeled as racist; the resolution is revoked in 1991.
Secretary of State Saunders on U.S. Foreign Policy and Peace in the Middle East
November 12, 1975
For the first time a US State Department official states the “legitimate interests of the Palestinian Arabs must be taken into account in the negotiating of an Arab-Israeli peace.”
Brookings Institute Report: Toward Peace in the Middle East
Outlining an Arab-Israeli settlement, it calls for Israeli withdrawal to “almost the pre-June War borders” and “extensive Palestinian autonomy.” The Carter Administration embraces the report for its policy.
Memorandum of Conversation: U.S. Secretary of State Vance in Israel with Israeli Foreign Minister, Yigal Allon
February 16, 1977
With candor, Israeli Foreign Minister Allon tells Secretary of State Vance that the Israeli Labor government would under no circumstances negotiate with the PLO until it gave up terrorism, recognized UNSC 242, and unequivocally accepted Israel’s right to exist. Only in 1993, did the PLO accept these premises, Sixteen years had then passed while Israel built settlements virtually without restraint in the territories.
Jimmy Carter Remarks and a Question-Answer Session at Clinton, Massachusetts Town Meeting
March 16, 1977
Carefully stated, Carter says that there should be a homeland for the Palestinian refugees. He is the first US president to assert the need for a place for the Palestinians and for Israel’s right to exist in peace.
Minutes of a Policy Review Committee Meeting About the Middle East
April 19, 1977
When the Carter Administration entered office in 1977, an early foreign policy priority was to kick-start Middle East negotiations. In this Policy Review Committee Meeting, Carter’s staff proposed a negotiating outcome that would pass through a conference, including the withdrawal of Israel’s forces to almost the 1967 borders, bringing the PLO into talks as Palestinian representatives, all the while seeking to uphold Israel's security requirements.
Memorandum of Conversation between Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and US President Jimmy Carter
July 19, 1977
Following his surprise electoral victory in May, Prime Minister Menachem Begin traveled to Washington in an effort to establish a positive rapport with President Carter. While this initial meeting was cordial, each met the others’ stubbornness, a characteristic that would keep their relationship respectful but acrid for years to come.
Israel Framework for the Peace-Making Process between Israel and its Neighbors
July 19, 1977
Begin tells Carter that Judea, Samaria (the West Bank) and the Gaza Strip will not be placed under foreign sovereignty; likewise, these areas will not be annexed, leaving them open for possible negotiations.
Dayan-Tuhami Meeting Minutes: The Institute for Intelligence and Special Operations
September 16, 1977
Israeli and Egyptian representatives meet secretly in Morocco to test intentions for direct talks between their leaders, with details of the meetings unknown to the United States.
Joint U.S.-Soviet Statement of the Middle East
October 1, 1977
Naively, the Carter Administration believes that a conference with the USSR would start comprehensive negotiations; instead, the fear of Moscow’s engagement helps drive direct Egyptian-Israeli talks.
US-Israeli Working Paper on Conference Procedures
October 4, 1977
After brutally frank and caustic meetings between Israeli Foreign Minister Dayan and President Carter, the US relents to Israeli demands that a peace conference be only an opening for direct talks.
Memorandum of Conversation between US President Jimmy Carter and Israeli Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan
October 4, 1977
Common to both the Labor Party and to Begin’s government was a fear that the US would pressure Israel into unwanted concessions and deny Israel its right to sovereign decision-making. It was a concern that Dayan expressed in this October 1977 meeting, and one that he would articulate on several occasions during the Camp David negotiations.
Israeli Prime Minister Menachen Begin’s Address to the Israeli Parliament
November 20, 1977
Begin welcomes Sadat’s bold initiative, seeking an end to the conflict with other Arab states through negotiated treaties. Begin invites other Arab leaders to negotiate as Sadat was doing.
Egyptian President Anwar Sadat to the Israeli Knesset
November 20, 1977
Sadat tells the Israeli people and world that he seeks a just and durable peace, which is not a separate peace, between Israel and Egypt. He equates statehood for the Palestinians as their right to retu
Statements by Presidents Sadat and Carter in Aswan, Egypt
January 1, 1978
As part of a joint statement, President Carter makes promises regarding US’ role in coming Political-Military Committee Talks in Cairo and Jerusalem. Likewise presenting a four-point formula for resolving the conflict, these statements contribute to US-Israeli tensions.
Memorandum of Conversation between US President Jimmy Carter and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and their Delegations
March 21, 1978
After a year in office, the Carter administration’s initiative to achieve a comprehensive Middle East peace between Israel and her Arab neighbors had stalled. At this White House meeting, Dayan reviewed Israel’s concerns about the West Bank and Brzezinski criticized Begin’s autonomy plan for the Palestinians. Begin and Carter’s mutual dislike over policy decisions continued to rise.
Memorandum of Conversation between US President Jimmy Carter, US Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, and Israeli Foreign Minister
Moshe Dayan at Camp David
September 16, 1978
In this meeting, the contents of which have not been released by the Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) but are available from the Israel State Archives (ISA), Begin clearly committed that “perhaps one military settlement” in the Jordan Valley would be established during the three months of the treaty negotiations. The extraordinarily contentious public dispute on the settlements would mar the diplomatic success of the Camp David Accords and add tension to the already fraught Carter-Begin relationship.
Camp David Accords
September 17, 1978
With President Carter mediating, Sadat and Begin agree to two outlines: a framework for a treaty between them and to define Palestinian “autonomy,” not self-determination or a state for them.
Minutes of Departure Conversation Between President Carter and Prime Minister Begin
September 20, 1978
Begin agrees to halt settlements construction only for the duration of the peace treaty negotiations, not until Palestinian autonomy is applied. Carter erroneously believes that Begin made a promise to halt settlements.
Memorandum of Conversation between US President Jimmy Carter and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin
March 2, 1979
Embedded in the September 17, 1978 Camp David Accords were broad outlines for an Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty and a Framework for Palestinian autonomy. The details of both remained to be negotiated. Yet, obstacles to implementation of the Accords appeared almost immediately.
Memorandum of Conversation Between US National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski and Saudi Arabian Prince Saud on Camp David Accords and Other Regional Issues
March 17, 1979
Nine days before the March 26, 1979 signing of the Egyptian-Israeli Treaty, US National Security Adviser, Zbigniew Brzezinski and Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud carried out an extraordinarily frank conversation. It included discussions about their bilateral relations, common fears of regional turbulence, and Sadat’s building estrangement from Arab leaders.
United Nations Security Council Resolution 446: Territories Occupied by Israel
March 22, 1979
Carefully sandwiched between Carter’s high-risk presidential visit to Egypt and Israel on March 10, 1979—to solve contentious disagreements between Sadat and Begin—and the Peace Treaty signing on March 26, 1979, his administration gladly votes at the UN to deplore Israeli settlement building; including demographic changes in Jerusalem. After the Peace Treaty signing, until it leaves office in 1981, the Carter administration will continue to barrage Israel with condemnation for settlement building.
Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty
March 26, 1979
Signed sixteen months after Sadat’s visit to Jerusalem, it calls for establishment of diplomatic relations, staged Israeli withdrawal from Sinai, and American security arrangements to support the bilateral treaty.
Memorandum of Agreement between the Governments of the United States of America and the State of Israel
March 26, 1979
If Egypt breaches the Egyptian-Israeli Treaty, the US will enhance its presence in the area, provide military and economic supplies to Israel, and vote against any UN resolution contrary to the treaty.
United Nations Security Council Resolution 452
July 20, 1979
This was the first UNSC resolution where the US, by abstaining, deplored Israel’s settlement expansion. Seeking to engage the PLO in accepting Israel and placating Saudi Arabia on the issue of Israel’s control over Jerusalem, the resolution’s contents further soured the Carter-Begin relationship. The Carter and Obama administrations in 1980 (UNSC460) and 2016 (UNSC 2334) would respectively reinforce the content of UNSC 452.
Venice Declaration on the ME Concerning Inclusion of PLO in Negotiations
It calls for “recognition of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, a just solution to the
Palestinian problem, the right to self-determination, [and] for PLO association to the negotiations.”
United Nations Security Council Resolution 478 on the Status of Territories Taken in the June 1967 War
August 20, 1980
(20 August 1980) https://unispal.un.org/DPA/DPR/unispal.nsf/0/DDE590C6FF232007852560DF0065FDDB The Security Council, Recalling its resolution 476 (1980), Reaffirming again that the acquisition of territory by force is inadmissible, Deeply concerned over the enactment of a “basic law” in the Israeli Knesset proclaiming a change in the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, with its implications for peace and security, Noting that Israel […]
MOU Between US and Israel on Strategic Cooperation
November 30, 1981
It calls for building a mutual security relationship and for enhancing strategic cooperation to
deter Soviet threats to the region. Establishment of a consultation framework is a key to the agreement.
Kahan – War in Lebanon
June 1982 – February 1983
Conclusions suggest that Israel has no direct responsibility for the massacre of
Palestinians in refugee camps in Beirut; Defense Minister Sharon resigns for ignoring the danger of potential
President Reagan Statement on the West Bank and the Palestinians
September 1, 1982
US endorses application of UN Resolution 242 to the West Bank and Gaza, and seeks Palestinian
control over land and resources, and for the territories to be affiliated with Jordan.
Reagan and Shamir on US-Israel cooperation
November 29, 1983
Areas of bi-lateral political and military cooperation are noted to fend off Soviet involvement in the the Middle East, to assist Israel in building the Lavi aircraft, to assure an independent Lebanon, and promote Arab-Israeli negotiations.
MOA Between the US and Israel Regarding Joint Political, Security, and Economic Cooperation
April 21, 1988
It affirms close relationship between US and Israel based on common goals, establishes the US-Israel
Free Trade Agreement, and institutes multiple regular meetings between Israeli and US officials.
Hamas Charter, Islamic Resistance Movement of Palestine
August 18, 1988
Founded in Gaza, Hamas absolutely opposes Israel’s right to exist and any negotiations or
recognition of Israel; in contesting leadership, Hamas severely fragments Palestinian politics for a quarter
U.S. Memorandum of Agreement to Israel on the Peace Process
September 16, 1991
As part of the preparations for the Fall 1991 Madrid Peace Conference, US Secretary of State James Baker drafted a memorandum of agreement between the US and Israel regarding the particulars of resuming the Arab-Israeli peace process. He opens by reiterating that the intention of the negotiations is to achieve a regional peace agreement based on UN Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338.
President George Bush I, Opening of the Madrid Middle East Peace Conference
October 30, 1991
After the 1991 Gulf War, the US orchestrates a conference with Israel, multiple Arab states, and Palestinians participating; the conference leads to bilateral and multilateral negotiations.
Israel-PLO Mutual Recognition Letters
September 9, 1993
Four days before signing the Oslo Accords, the PLO and Israel recognize each other. Israel’s
Rabin worries about the growth of Hamas influence, thus elevates the PLO through international recognition.
Oslo Accords (Declaration of Principles on Interim Self- Government Agreements)
September 13, 1993
Negotiated through the Norwegians, the Accords call for limited Palestinian rule in some of the territories; it did not call for a Palestinian state or an end to settlements.
Israeli-Jordanian Treaty, Excerpts
October 26, 1994
Jordan becomes the second Arab country after Egypt (1979) to sign a peace treaty ending the state of war with Israel. The Treaty addresses boundary demarcations, water sharing, police and security cooperation, environmental issues, border crossings, administration of Muslim holy sites and other issues.
Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin’s Reasons for Signing the Oslo Accords
November 1, 1995
(November 1, 1995) On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Oslo Accords, September 13, 1993, an agreement between Israel and the PLO that spelled out potential Palestinian self-rule, scholars and diplomats who worked back then have written dozens of articles, published interviews, and participated in video documentaries praising and […]
United States Jerusalem Embassy Act of 1995
November 8, 1995
In 1995, Senators Robert Dole and Jon Kyl introduced the Jerusalem Embassy Act to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. The bill was adopted by an overwhelming majority in both houses of Congress; it provided Presidential authorization to effectively delay the embassy move every six months, if deemed necessary for U.S. national security interests.
Shamgar Commission Report on the Assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin
March 28, 1996
The Israeli investigation concludes that Yigal Amir is Rabin’s assassin. The Commission does not assess the impact on the assassin of the vicious language directed at Rabin for signing the Oslo Accords.
US-Israel Joint Statement on Strategic Cooperation
April 30, 1996
President Clinton and Prime Minister Peres agree to deepen cooperation between their countries through regular consultation in all economic, political, military spheres.
Wye River Memorandum on Unilateral Actions, Security and other Matters between Israel and the PA
October 23, 1998
With Israeli-Palestinian talks in a hapless state, President Clinton rejuvenates them. In the Arafat-Netanyahu agreement Israel shares Hebron, with the CIA playing a role in West Bank security.
Minister of Foreign Affairs David Levy Comments on EU – Israel Association Agreement
June 13, 2000
This is the third (1971 and 1985) and most extensive trade agreement signed between Israel and the EC/EU, emphasizing that more than half of all Israeli exports are to Europe. Virtually every conceivable area of sharing and exchange is noted in the agreement.
Or Commission- The Arab Sector
Responding to two weeks of violence in the Arab sector, the Government’s report blames several political and community leaders for mismanagement, and sets up a permanent Ministerial Committee for Arab affairs.
Clinton Parameters for Negotiating Peace
December 23, 2000
After trying but not succeeding in having PLO leader Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Barak reach an understanding at Camp David in August 2000, he offers a US view of a final status agreement near the end of his term in office.
May 8, 2001
In the midst of severe Palestinian-Israeli clashes, the Report concluded as had many previous investigations that the two communities feared, disdained, and wanted to live separately from one another. From the report flowed the EU, UN, US, commitment to a two-state solution suggested in the 2003 Road Map for Peace.
UN Security Resolution 1397 Reaffirming a Two-State Solution
March 12, 2002
This is the first UN resolution to call for “two States, Israel and Palestine, to live side by side within secure and recognized borders.”
The 2002 Arab Peace Initiative
March 28, 2002
From an Arab summit, the initiative is revised several times since; it calls for normalization of relations with Israel, Israel’s withdrawal to the 1967 lines, but states an imprecise resolution of the refugee issue.
President George Bush II on the Middle East, “The Future Itself is Dying”
April 4, 2002
He castigates PLO leader Arafat for support of terrorism and condemns Palestinian groups that “seek Israel’s destruction.” Bush suggests to Israel to support economically a viable Palestinian state.
A Roadmap for a Permanent Two-State Solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
April 20, 2003
As a negotiating plan it seeks an end to the conflict with reciprocal performance objectives. Israel accepts the plan with some reservations; Hamas rejects it out of hand. The plan is not enacted.
Address by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon at the Fourth Herzliya Conference
December 18, 2003
In his speech at the annual Herziliya Conference, PM Sharon articulates his view that the Quartet’s 2003 Road Map for Peace “is the only political plan accepted by Israel, the Palestinians, the Americans and a majority of the international community. We are willing to proceed toward its implementation: two states Israel and a Palestinian State living side by side in tranquility, security and peace.”
George Bush (II) and Ariel Sharon Letters
April 14, 2004
President Bush outlines view of Palestinian-Israeli settlement with Israeli Prime Minister: two state solution, borders to take into account changes in territories since 1967 War, and refugee resettlement in a future Palestinian state.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s Address at the Herzliya Conference
December 16, 2004
In preparing the Israeli public, Prime Minister Sharon outlines his government's preparations for Israel's August 2005 unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. Sharon's optimism includes hopes for a long-lasting Israeli-Palestinian agreement, rebuilding the Israeli econonmy, and improving citizen's security. Within a year of the speech, he suffers a debilitating stroke; the Gaza withdrawal in 30 months becomes a hazard to Israel's security.
Annapolis Peace Conference, Joint Understanding Read by US President George Bush II
November 27, 2007
Israeli Prime Minister Olmert and Palestinian leader Abbas meet in Washington to ‘kick start’ negotiations by implementing previous promises; the US is to judge performance to see if a treaty can result. It does not.
United Nations Security Council Resolution 1860
January 8, 2009
Following two weeks of Israeli-Hamas fighting, it calls for a cease-fire, and for a “lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by peaceful means.” The Hamas-Israeli war occurs again in 2013-2014.
Speech by U.S. President Barack Obama at Cairo University
June 4, 2009
Obama, to improve America’s image with Muslim public opinion, stresses that Islam is not that of the ideological radicals. His advocacy of ‘soft power’ distinguishes his administration from Bush II’s use of force. He did not state directly that Iran should be stopped from developing a nuclear weapon. He said that US commitment to Israel is ‘unbreakable.’ Nine years later Trump’s Secretary of State, also in Cairo heavily criticized Obama’s ‘soft power’ approach.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Bar-Ilan University, June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
Forty years ago in the Camp David negotiations, Prime Minister Begin's team was unalterably opposed to any considerations for a Palestinian state. Since then four Israeli prime ministers have proposed some variation of a demilitarized Palestinian state. Prime Minister Netanyahu's June 2009 suggestions provide insightful context.
President Obama Statement on the Middle East, North Africa and the Negotiating Process
May 19, 2011
Focusing on the Arab spring and Palestinian-Israeli negotiations, Obama seeks democratic reform in the region and advocates two states for two peoples based on the 1967 lines with land swaps.
Remarks by Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta
December 2, 2011
The speech is typical of high American office holders in summarizing the US-Israeli relationship; it affirms an unshakable relationship, support for Israeli security, and the need for negotiating progress.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Addresses AIPAC
March 6, 2012
Netanyahu devotes the bulk of his speech to the Iranian threat, its desire to acquire a nuclear weapon, and its sponsorship of terrorism internationally. He speaks proudly of the US-Israeli relationship.
Joe Biden’s Remarks to the Rabbinical Assembly in Atlanta, Georgia
May 8, 2012
Vice President Joe Biden emphatically tells a rabbinic group in Atlanta, “unambiguously, were I an Israeli, were I a Jew, I would not contract out my security to anybody, even to a loyal, loyal friend like the United States.”
US-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act
July 27, 2012
Building on a collaborative relationship of over 50 years, the US once again affirms its strategic commitments to Israel through an additional “Security Cooperation Act.” The agreement bolsters American military and financial aid to Israel.
President Obama to the People of Israel
March 21, 2013
In Jerusalem, Obama affirms the bonds in the US-Israeli relationship, praises Israel’s democracy, calls for Israelis to support a democratic Palestinian state, and Palestinians to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
Remarks by Secretary of State John Kerry at the Saban Forum
December 7, 2013
Kerry reaffirms that the US-Israeli relationship as an “unshakable bond” and calls for a two-state solution. He promises that the US will “never allow” Iran to gain a nuclear weapon.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper Addresses the Knesset
January 20, 2014
As the first Canadian Prime Minister to address the Knesset, Harper asserts Canada’s long-time friendship with Israel. Two days later, Canada signs a strategic cooperation agreement with Israel.
Remarks on the Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations by US Negotiator, Ambassador Martin Indyk
May 8, 2014
As part of the US negotiating team, Indyk enumerates why talks faltered after nine months. He asserts Israeli settlement activity undermined Palestinian trust for Israel. He also blames Palestinian indecision.
President Obama’s Address to the UN General Assembly
September 24, 2014
US President announces creation of a coalition of countries to fight against the Islamic state in Syria and Iraq. His plan calls for limited US military action with supplies provided to others fighting on the ground.
Israeli Ambassador to the UN Prosor’s Statement to the the UN
November 24, 2014
Prosor accuses the UN of duplicity and hypocrisy because it is constantly critical of Israel, but not of radical Muslims for killing of Yazidis, Bahais, Kurds, and Christians.
European Parliament Calls for Recognition of Palestinian Statehood in Context with Two States Living Side by Side
December 17, 2014
European Parliament calls for recognition of Palestinian statehood in the context for a negotiated two-state solution for Palestinians and Israelis; it outlines the political and geographic contours for a negotiated outcome.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Address to the US Congress
March 3, 2015
Netanyahu praises the Obama administration for its support of Israel’s security, then roundly criticizes it for negotiating a deal with Iran that will not roll back its nuclear breakout time and for not demanding that before sanctions are lifted that Iran stop its support of terrorism and threats to wipe Israel off the map.
Remarks by President Obama on the Iran Nuclear Deal at American University
August 5, 2015
Vigorously promoting this Iran Deal as a viable way to block and limit Iran pathways to a bomb. While recognizing Israel’s intense trepidation to the deal, he forcefully claims that war remains the only alternative to accepting this agreement, or to any changes to the agreement.
PM Netanyahu’s Speech at the United Nations General Assembly
October 1, 2015
Netanyahu reproaches the international community for supporting the Iran deal, the UN for its deafening silence against threats to Israel, and, against Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas for promising to cancel all agreements with Israel.
Secretary of State John Kerry’s Address to the Brookings Institute’s 2015 Saban Forum
December 5, 2015
Kerry states five major objectives for US foreign policy in the Middle East: mobilize partners to defeat ISIS, work diplomatically to end the civil war in Syria, keep it from destabilizing friendly nearby countries, monitor Iranian adherence to the nuclear deal, and seek a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro’s Address to Security Conference in Tel Aviv
January 18, 2016
Claiming that Israel employs a double legal standard in the West Bank, US Ambassador Dan Shapiro receives a harsh rebuke for his remarks from Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu; Obama administration continues to chide Israel for its management of the West Bank.
Remarks by US National Security Advisor Susan Rice at the American Jewish Committee Global Forum
June 6, 2016
US National Security Adviser, Susan Rice presented the Obama administration’s two pronged outlook toward Israel: strong and unwavering American administration support for Israel’s long term security, and emphatic opposition to continued Israeli settlement activities.
Text of Egyptian-Drafted UNSC Resolution 2334 on Israeli Settlements
December 23, 2016
Despite a pattern of the US using its veto power to sink UNSC resolutions that were critical of Israel, the Obama administration in its last days in office, and deeply perturbed by Israel's settlement policies, abstained from voting on this resolution condemning Israeli settlement construction, including East Jerusalem.
Secretary of State John Kerry’s Remarks about the Middle East and Arab-Israeli Negotiations
December 28, 2016
With exasperating passion, Kerry lashes out at Israel for its settlements construction as the major barrier to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
President Trump’s Speech to the Arab Islamic American Summit in Saudi Arabia
May 21, 2017
Backpedaling from previously hardline statements on Islam, President Trump refers to Islam as “one of the world’s great faiths” calling for “tolerance and respect for each other.” He implored Muslim leaders to fight against radical Islam, which he portrayed as a “…a battle between good and evil.”
Remarks by President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu in Joint Statement
May 22, 2017
After visiting Saudi Arabia, Trump meets with Netanyahu where both assert joint views on the peace process, Iran, regional cooperation, and the long-standing relationship between Israel and the US; Trumps second meeting with Netanyahu since taking office.
President Trump’s Speech Recognizing Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel
December 6, 2017
President Trump’s proclamation to “officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel” breaks precedent. In doing so, he incurs bipartisan support in the US congress, but a flurry of criticism from analysts, diplomats and foreign leaders. In his remarks, Trump rebukes claims that he disqualified the US as a “reliable mediator” in future Palestinian-Israeli negotiations.
Vice President Pence’s Speech to the Knesset
January 22, 2018
Vice President Pence firmly expresses American commitments to Israel’s security and commitment to the Arab-Israeli peace process. Palestinian Authority President Abbas and other Arab officials loudly criticize the speech and refuse to meet with Pence during his Middle East visit because of earlier US promise to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Ambassador Haley’s Remarks at UN Security Council Briefing on the Middle East Situation
February 20, 2018
Responding to PA President Abass’ earlier speech at the UN and the PA’s rejection of the US as a legitimate participant in future Palestinian-Israeli negotiations, Ambassador Halley clarified American positions on Jerusalem and the negotiating process.
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Anti-Iran Deal Speech in Israel
April 30, 2018
With reams of evidence secured by Israeli intelligence, the PM calls out Iran for lying about their nuclear activities both before and since signing the 2015 JCPOA nuclear agreement with six countries.
Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People
July 19, 2018
(9 July 2018) https://www.timesofisrael.com/final-text-of-jewish-nation-state-bill-set-to-become-law/ 1 — Basic principles A. The land of Israel is the historical homeland of the Jewish people, in which the State of Israel was established. B. The State of Israel is the national home of the Jewish people, in which it fulfills its natural, cultural, religious and historical right to self-determination. C. […]
Secretary of State Pompeo’s Speech at The American University in Cairo
January 10, 2019
(10 January 2019) https://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2019/01/288410.htm Ten Years after President Obama spoke at American University in Cairo, Secretary of State Pompeo intentionally uses the same venue to deliver a Trump administration rebuke of the former’s policies in the region. Obama spoke of using ‘soft power;’ his predecessor George Bush II used military force in Iraq and Afghanistan; […]
Benny Gantz Campaign Launch Speech
January 29, 2019
A former IDF General, Benny Gantz’s speech officially launched his campaign to replace current Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in April 2019 elections. With pride of ownership, Gantz spoke of his love of Zionism, the Jewish people and the state of Israel. He intoned for new leadership, not-self-absorbed, reminding his listeners that his army career of 38 years reflected a keenness to protect the state, a place where he made tough decisions. He warned Israel’s adversaries while calling for an end to domestic divisions and corruption. He called for a moral government that will do its best for all of its citizens in the fields of education, business, health care. His maiden political speech reflected a definite pragmatic and centrist outlook.
Presidential Proclamation Recognizing the Golan Heights as Part of the State of Israel
March 25, 2019
https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/proclamation-recognizing-golan-heights-part-state-israel/ (25 March 2019) The State of Israel took control of the Golan Heights in 1967 to safeguard its security from external threats. Today, aggressive acts by Iran and terrorist groups, including Hizballah, in southern Syria continue to make the Golan Heights a potential launching ground for attacks on Israel. Any possible future peace agreement […]
Vision for Peace, Prosperity, and a Brighter Future for Israel and the Palestinian People
January 28, 2020
The plan builds on previous proposals for a two-state solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict and contains a US-Israeli agreement that sets forth final borders for two states. The plan contains multiple prerequisites for Palestinian behavior before either the US or Israel might agree to Palestinian statehood as well as a proposed $50 economic development package to be allotted over a decade.
Ambassador David Friedman—The Trump Plan: A Changing Diplomatic Paradigm for the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
February 11, 2020
US Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman provides the most detailed Trump administration analyses of the prescribed two-state solution for terminating the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict.
Coalition Agreement for the Establishment of an Emergency and National Unity Government in Israel
April 20, 2020
Israeli Likud and Blue and White parties agree to a three-year national unity coalition government with a rotation of Prime Ministers (Netanyahu and Gantz) to take place after 18 months. The Covid-19 pandemic, earlier paralysis in coalition formation, and President Rivlin's urging catalyze the coalition agreement.
Joint Statement of the United States, the State of Israel, and the United Arab Emirates
August 13, 2020
President Trump announces the diplomatic breakthrough, in which Israel halts its plans to annex parts of the West Bank, and in return, the UAE agrees to full diplomatic relations with Israel. This took place without any Israeli commitments to withdrawal from lands it won in the June 1967 war.
Abraham Accords-US, UAE, Israel, Bahrain Recognition Agreements
September 15, 2020
Quietly pursued in the past, long-standing strategic ties between Israel and Gulf states have become public. Building on the historic Joint Agreement signed between Israel and the UAE in August 2020, the Abraham Accords serve as a framework for normalizing diplomatic relations between Israel, the UAE and Bahrain.
Interview on Inside the Normalization Agreements Between Israel, the UAE, and Bahrain
November 10, 2020
UAE and Bahraini ambassadors to the US provide incisively sharp assessments about why their peace accords unfolded with Israel in September 2020: to halt West Bank annexation, strengthen ties with the US, enhance national security purposes, and stimulate, if possible Palestinian-Israeli negotiations.