The Albatross of Decisive Victory: War and Policy Between Egypt and Israel in the 1967 and 1973 Arab-Israeli Wars

The Albatross of Decisive Victory: War and Policy Between Egypt and Israel in the 1967 and 1973 Arab-Israeli Wars

by George W. Gawrych

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In 1967, the Israeli Defense Forces defeated the combined armies of Egypt, Jordan, and Syria in a mere six days. This remarkable military accomplishment would, however, have the ultimate effect of creating an albatross around the neck of the Israeli Army, as Israelis would now expect the next conventional war with the Arabs to achieve similar results: a quick, decisive victory with relatively few casualties. Although Egyptian forces were militarily inferior to those of Israel, President Anwar Sadat developed a successful limited war strategy designed to exploit this unrealistic expectation.

Rather than aiming to achieve a military victory or to seize strategic terrain, Sadat merely sought to break a diplomatic stalemate with a major military operation designed to soften Israeli intransigence toward negotiations and to force a change in U.S. foreign policy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict. In support of these political aims, the Egyptian Armed Forces set out to discredit the Israeli Army's prowess by inflicting heavy casualties in a limited war. Sadat's success in regaining the entire Sinai without another armed struggle holds an important lesson for the United States. After its dramatic victory in Desert Storm, American armed forces feel compelled to win the next conventional war quickly, decisively, and with relatively few casualties, much like the challenge that faced Israel after the 1967 war.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780313313028
Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date: 03/30/2000
Series: Contributions in Military Studies Series , #188
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.69(d)

About the Author

GEORGE W. GAWRYCH is Historian on the faculty of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, a position he has held since July 1984. He taught at the University of Hawaii, the University of Kansas, and the School of International Studies at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. His publications on modern Middle East history include articles in academic journals and two short monographs published by the U.S. Army. In November 1989, he received the Turkish Studies Association's biennial prize for the best published article in Turkish Studies.

Table of Contents


Stumbling into War

Israel's Blitzkrieg

The Egyptian Phoenix

A Three Year Border War

"No War, No Peace"

Egypt's Assault

Israel's Resurgence

Ascent of the Dove




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