Decision Points

Begin, Sadat and Carter: Camp David Breakthrough

Dec. 11, 2019

This episode focuses on the first Arab-Israeli peace breakthrough, the Camp David Accords of 1978. Camp David resulted from Egyptian president Anwar Sadat’s electrifying visit to Jerusalem. It also required political courage from the other two leaders involved—President Jimmy Carter and Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin, who each took risks that put them at odds with domestic allies. The resultant Egypt-Israel peace treaty has had a remarkable impact on both countries, including an end to decades of interstate wars. And it endures today despite facing many obstacles, including Sadat’s assassination.


Host David Makovsky discusses this major decision point with Dr. Ken Stein, who has been a professor of contemporary Middle Eastern history, political science, and Israel studies at Emory University for forty-three years. Ken has written several books on regional peace negotiations, including Heroic Diplomacy: Sadat, Kissinger, Carter, Begin, and the Quest for Arab-Israeli Peace.

Audio clips used:


Middle East: Sadat's Visit to Israel (B)

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