(1 September 1975)

Ford, Gerald R. Letter to Yitzhak Rabin. 1 Sept. 1975. TS.

Printable PDF

 

The U.S. has never formally adopted a position on the final status of the Golan Heights, preferring that the issue be settled via direct Israeli-Syrian negotiations. In this 1975 letter, recently reaffirmed by the U.S. Government, President Ford committed the U.S. to give “great weight to Israel’s position that any peace agreement with Syria must be predicated on Israel remaining on the Golan Heights.”

-Ken Stein January, 2010


Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Source: Library of Congress Prints
Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Source: Library of Congress Prints

…In the spirit of the special relationship existing between the United States and Israel and in light of the determination of both sides to avoid a situation in which the U.S. and Israel would pursue divergent courses in peace negotiations, the U.S. will take the position that these are negotiations between the parties.  As I indicated to you in our conversation on 12 June 1975, the situation in the aftermath of the Israeli-Egyptian Interim Agreement will be one in which the overall settlement can be pursued in a systematic and deliberate way and does not require the U.S. to put forward an overall proposal of its own in such circumstances.  Should the U.S. desire in the future to put forward proposals of its own, it will make every effort to coordinate with Israel its proposals with a view to refraining from putting forth proposals that Israel would consider unsatisfactory.

The U.S. will support the position that an overall settlement with Syria in the framework of a peace agreement must assure Israel’s security from attack from the Golan Heights.  The U.S. further supports the position that a just and lasting peace, which remains our objective, must be acceptable to both sides.  The U.S. has not developed a final position on the borders.  Should it do so, it will give great weight to Israel’s position that any peace agreement with Syria must be predicated on Israel remaining on the Golan Heights.  My view in this regard was stated in our conversation of 13 September 1974.

Pres. Ford (L) and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (R). Source: Library of Congress Prints
Pres. Ford (L) and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (R). Source: Library of Congress Prints

Sincerely,

Gerald R. Ford

November 21, 2014