a different side of Israel

Tag: Egypt (page 3 of 3)

The Dale Carnegie Course Lieberman style

Dale Carnegy Vs Liberman“I have seen all the proposals made so generously by Ehud Olmert, but I have not seen any result”; so spoke Israel’s new Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, during his first address to the media after assuming his post. He went on to say that the way the free world has tried to deal with issues like Islamic sponsored terrorism and Iran’s nuclear program hasn’t worked, and that the real world security problems are coming from countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran and Iraq and not from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Lieberman specifically renounced the giving of concessions in order to gain peace. “The fact that we say the word “peace” twenty times a day will not bring peace any closer”, he added. He also said that the time-worn “Westphalia” conception of nation states is dead, and has been replaced by a modern conception of states, semi-states and “irrational international players” most noteworthy Al Qaeda and Iran. But what seemed to frost many diplomats the most, especially Egypt’s, was when he said he will only go there on diplomatic missions if his counterpart is willing to visit him in Israel’s capital, Jerusalem. That remark caused the Egyptian ambassador to say he will “keep his hands in his pockets” should the two men even meet face to face.

Judging from the silence that emanated from his remarks, and the comments made by various international medias afterwards, Foreign Minister Lieberman did not go very far in regards to the strategies mooted by that world famous maestro of human relations Dale Carnegie, whose best selling book How to Make Friends and Influence People appeared in the late 1930’s, and is still widely used for perfecting human relations strategies by many people today.

Thus began the term of the man who is questioned and even feared in his own country, regarding his outlook on the present world order; especially when he ended his 15 minute reality trip by quoting an ancient Roman general who said in regards to peace: “Si vis pacem para bellum“– if you want peace, prepare for war – be strong!”

Dale Carnegie would never have used this strategy in his world famous books and self improvement courses; but again, Lieberman is not Carnegie, and doesn’t intend to be. And we can all be certain that Israel’s enemies and critiques are already aware of this…

30 Years After Sadat Visit to Israel

30 Years After Sadat Visit to Israel
Who would have thought the Egyptian President Muhammad Anwar Sadat would be addressing a packed session of the Israeli Knesset on November 20, 1977. Those of us who saw this event, either in person or on TV, still marvel that this event took place, especially due to the circumstances at the time (only four years after the Yom Kippur War) and in light of what is the present reality today.

I had only been in Israel for three years when this event took place. The sight of Sadat emerging from the plane that had brought him and his entourage from Cairo to Ben Gurion Airport, was something that brought feelings of wonder and exhilaration to virtually everyone who witnessed it; especially those like myself who believed that this might be a new beginning for relations between the State of Israel and her hostile neighbors – especially with one of the countries that could have been instrumental in Israel’s destruction. Sadat himself had great apprehensions to come to Israel, fearing harm not only to himself and his family, but to his country as well by journeying to what most Arab countries still consider to be their worst enemy.

Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin was himself an ultra right winged politician, who until his election victory a mere six months before was always in the opposition to the previous labor led Israeli governments. Yet, here he was sitting beside the Egyptian president in Israel’s parliament, and saying to the world that there should be “no more war, no more bloodshed”. It was also touching when former Israeli P.M. Golda Meir, who was in power at the time of the Yom Kippur War, gave the Egyptian president a special gift for his new granddaughter “from a grandmother to a grandfather”.

A lot of things have happened in the 30 years since that historic visit – in both Israel and in the world at large. True, a peace agreement between Israel and Egypt was worked out several months later at Camp David Maryland. And Sadat and Begin, together with U.S. President Jimmy Carter sealed it with handshakes on the White House lawn. Sadat, unfortunately, paid for this treaty with his life, and Begin died a broken man following the double catastrophes of the death of his wife, Aliza, and the outbreak of the 1982 war in Lebanon. Though Jordan’s King Hussein eventually followed Egypt in making peace with Israel, the situation in Israel’s neighborhood is still far from ideal as the “Palestinian problem in all it’s aspects”, as noted in the treaty declaration, has yet to be solved. Syria is still an arch enemy of Israel, as well as Lebanon, which is partially under the dominance of the radical Shiite Muslim Hezbollah organization. The “peace” between Israel and Egypt is a cold one at best; and the future is very uncertain as Egypt’s present leader, Hosni Mubarak, is approaching age 80. Even the peace with Jordan is not like many would like it to be, as a new king, Hussein’s son Abdullah, now sits on the Hashimite throne.

And as for Israel’s present relations with the Palestinians, as many a Jewish grandmother would say: “don’t ask!”

Still, in spite of everything, those awe inspiring and enchanting two days of November 19 -21, 1977, will forever linger on many peoples’ minds. I know they do on mine.

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