- - Tuesday, March 29, 2016

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

We recognize March 26 as the anniversary of peace between Egypt and Israel, and concurrently applaud former President Jimmy Carter’s 2002 Nobel Peace Prize. Nevertheless, we should remember the truly worthy recipient was Egyptian President Anwar Sadat.

Through three wars Arab leaders had used Egyptian blood as vicarious satisfaction for the hatred of Israeli Jews, which had invigorated their despotic regimes. By the end of the 1973 war, Sadat was certain Egypt’s price for Arab victory would not only include countless military deaths, but also destruction of the Aswan Dam, with hundreds of thousands of Egyptian flood victims and catastrophic infrastructure damage.

Sadat brought an end to this warring cycle and looming national catastrophe with his historic trip to Jerusalem on Nov. 7, 1977. The visit began a process he formalized by signing the Camp David Accords the following September, and the peace treaty of 1979. For his extraordinary statesmanship, the Arab League suspended Egyptian membership. Two years later Sadat was assassinated by an amalgam of Islamic radicals, including Ayman al-Zawahiri, who came from the Muslim Brotherhood and became the leader of al-Qaeda.

In comparison, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin risked little politically, and Mr. Carter just served milk and cookies notwithstanding the plaudits from the Nobel committee.

NOLAN NELSON

Eugene, Ore.

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