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Statement by Katzir

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President Ephraim Katzir of Israel declared in a message to world Jewry on the occasion of Israel’s 30th anniversary that his nation’s strength will bring peace with Egypt and its other neighbors, noting that “strength includes the capacity for adjustment and conciliation.” In his message, Katzir said:

“Strength on one side breeds confidence on the other. Surely this is a partial explanation of the revolutionary step taken by President Sadat in coming to Jerusalem last November. No single step, even of this magnitude, can swiftly bring total results in a situation as tangled and bitter as the Arab-Israel conflict. But we continue to believe, despite all setbacks, that we will be moving toward peace, peace which we need and desire, peace which Egypt and our other neighbors need and desire.

“The road to it cannot be easy, but by the logic of the situation it will have to be taken, and strength includes the capacity for adjustment and conciliation. After three decades, there is something new on the horizon of Middle East statesmanship. We pray that Israel’s thirty-first year may bring us much closer to peace, bringing the blessings not only to ourselves but to many millions of other human beings. In this hope and spirit, we celebrate Israel’s thirtieth anniversary.”

Katzir observed that the source of Israel’s strength “is in the human material that builds a state, in the three million and more Israelis of today” to whom “another vitally important factor has been added: the understanding support diaspora communities have given Israel so consistently and with such growing personal involvement.”

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