Monday, October 28, 2013
Sunday marked the 40th anniversary of the 1973 talks between Israel and Egypt at Kilometer 101. (Actually, since the first meeting took place after midnight, we can equally say that today is the anniversary.) The first direct talks between Israel and Egypt after years of "proximity" negotiations, they were aimed at negotiating the relief of the Egyptian Third Field Army, which had been cut off by Israel's advance across the Suez Canal shortly before the ceasefire in the October 1973 war. I have dealt with the talks in more detail here, but the direct talks, though between military commanders about battlefield disengagement, marked the beginning of the peace process that would lead directly to the Kissinger shuttle diplomacy and, eventually, to Sadat's 1977 trip to Jerusalem and the subsequent Arab-Israeli peace treaty.