B A C K G R O U N D
THE NASStR DOCTRINE UITH WHICH ISRAEL HAS TO LIVE
THE EMBASSY OF ISRAEL
April 1, 1969
P 0L C
THE NASSER DOCTRINE UITH UHICH ISRAEL HAS TO LIVE
1. Publicly and explicitly, President Nasser has told the Egyptian
people that he will not entertain any manner of a rapproachement with
Israel. He declared his "resolute purpose" to mobilize Egypt for
an all-out war against Israel and served notice on Israel's civilian
population that they are to be a prime target.
This was the tenor of the message delivered by President Nasser
in Cairo on March 27, 1969, in an address to the National Congress of
the Arab Socialist Union, Egypt's sole political party.
Quotes From the Address
2. The following are the salient passages:
On the inadmissability of peace under any terms -- "Ue have declared
our principles -- no negotiations, no peace, no relinquishing one
inch of Arab land and no bargaining over Palestinian rights.
These are.our principles; we shall never give them up."
On the nature of the impending battle -- "The Egyptian armed forces,
rebuilt from the defeat of 1967, are preparing to launch the
battle of liberation against Israel... The day will come when
Egyptian troops will bomb and shell Israeli population centers..."
On Israel's quest for a negotiated peace -- "Israel is trying to impose
peace by force. To talk peace with the enemy would be to surrender."
On four-power talks -- "The position of the Big Four will be a new
measure to unmistakably define the position of friend and foe.
The position of these powers will determine for each one of them
the extent of its relations with our Arab nation for many years
to come. The fate of the Middle East will be determined in the
Middle East itself and no man can impose on the Arab nation any-
thing that conflicts with Arab justice and harmful to Arab legiti-
mate and historical rights. Peace cannot be imposed."
On the imminence of war -- "The area is near the explosion point. If
the big powers cannot find a way outj then we all know what will
happen. The crisis cannot wait anymore than it has. It is a
miracle that it has remained so long without exploding."
On Israel's elimination -- "The Palestinian soil is not a subject for
discussion. It is the sole property of the people of Palestine."
On Russian weapons supply -- "The Soviet Union supplies us with our
weapon needs. Without their weapons, we would not be able, when
the time comes, to strike our blow against the enemy... The USSR
supplies us with the arms without exerting pressure on our financial
resources. It is enough for me to say that we have obtained from
Russia all the weapons without our having had to pay so far a
On Russian experts -- "The Soviets are today present within our armed
forces and are serving as instructors in the different branches
from the highest to the lowest levels of command. We are bene-
fitting from their experience so that our forces will reach the
full capacity necessary to enable them to begin the battle of
On terrorism -- "We will give our total support by every means to the
Palestinian organizations They have the right to fight and demand
the retrieval of their rights in full... Ue must remember those
Arabs who chose to remain in Israel in 1948. They are the most
courageous of all since their staying put was itself a sacrifice."
3. The above represents basic doctrine determining president Nasser's
policies towards Israel: total rejection of peace, of coexistence, of
any form of rapproachement. He has once more reiterated and with pre-
cision what he has been telling his people time and again -- that the
crucial issue at stake is not Israel's shape or area or the nature of
its borders; it is the existence of Israel itself. "Israel's very
existence is aggression," said President Nasser at a Cairo press con-
ference on the eve of the June war (May 28, 1967), and he has again
espoused the view that the war will end only with Israel's elimination.
4. President Nasser's latest speech supplements the addresses he de-
livered before the National Assembly of the United Arab Republic on
January 20, 1969, and before the Palestine National Council on Feb-
ruary 1, 1969. Together, they add up to a concerted policy calculated
One: Make full use of the cease-fire to rebuild Arab offensive
power and strengthen the terrorist organizations. In the words of
the Nasserite spokesman, Hasanyn Haykal, chief editor of the semi-
official Cairo daily, "Al Aharam," (March 21, 1969): "Had the
Arab nation failed to distinguish between acceptance of the cease-
fire and rejection of disengagement, it would have given the enemy
the security he wanted."
And: "The cease-fire gave the Palestinian organizations, both
inside and outside the occupied territories, an opportunity to take
stock of tho positions and go into action."
Two: Spread the myth of the imminence of full-scale war so as to
rally international pressure against Israel to compel its with-
drawul from the cease-fire lines. The recent Egyptian provocations
along the Suez Canal are intimately connected with this effort.
As stated by Haykal, March 21, 1969, "Non-disengagement has been
like a bell constantly ringing and attracting world attention to
the seriousness of the Mideast crisis. By nature, world opinion
does not form voluntarily. It forms best under the influence of
explosive pressure." The war scare tactic was given priority fol-
lowing the Arab and Soviet failure to win international support for
their one-sided interpretation of the Security Council resolution
(Nov. 22, 1967), calculated to achieve an unconditional Israeli
April 1, 1969
Three: Exert pressure on the United States to join in imposing on
Israel a withdrawal without peace. The Soviet Union and France
have cooperated actively in this design and in its pursuit, initi-
ated the idea of four-power talks. President Nasser, in his recent
address, served notice on the United States that its failure to co-
operate in a political arrangement that would be imposed upon Israel
would be interpreted as a hostile act towards the Arabs. Again,
the attacks along the Suez Canal and Nasser's statements on the
imminence of war are timed to pressure the U.S. into a policy in
line with that of the USSR and France.
Four: Prepare for full-scale war against Israel once Israel's
withdrawal has been brought about through international pressure.
Commitment Not Propaganda
4. It is against these fundamentals of Nasser's policies that Israel's
own behavior has to be measured. Let it be stated first that while
the cease-fire violations have to be viewed as serious, they lack the
momentum capable of escalation into full-scale war. They do not
threaten the basic fabric of the cease-fire structure. Israel is able
to contain the flare-ups and there is nothing to indicate that war in
the area is imminent. President Nasser's statements to the contrary
have a manifestly political purpose. He is the only one in the region
potentially capable of launching such a war, and there is much to indi-
cate that he is by no means ready for broad military action. There is
also evidence that the Soviet Union is anxious to avert, now, a major
military confrontation for fear that an Egyptian defeat would involve
the Soviets directly.
5. What has to be taken at face value in President Nasser's recent
address -- and for this there is ample evidence that he means precisely
what he says -- is his total lack of readiness to contemplate peace
with Israel and his persistent resolve to strike at Israel's very sov-
ereign existence. His speech of March 27 constituted a catalogue of
commitments by the leader of the party to his party. Nasser has shown
that such party statements are no mere propaganda exercises. They are
tenets of policy.
So long as Nasser's policy remains unaltered, Israel has no alter-
native but to persevere in according supreme priority to its crucial
security needs. Israel is resolved not to compromise those needs by
moving away from its present lines of defense and security without a
firm Arab commitment on a comprehensive peace directly negotiated and
contractually sealed. It will have nothing to do with any intermediate
political arrangement -- conceived inside or outside a four-power forum
-- because any such arrangement is not a lasting settlement of peace.
It is a mere breathing spell for the next war. Israel's deter-
mination is to transform the cease-fire into peace, nothing less.