189. Transcript of a Telephone Conversation Between President Carter and Egyptian President Sadat1

PARTICIPANTS

  • The President
  • President Sadat

The President: This is Jimmy Carter. How are you? Can you hear me?

Sadat: Good evening. How are Rosalynn and the children?

The President: When are you coming to see me?

Sadat: I am always happy to see you.

The President: Let me report to you. I have arranged2 for Begin to come here Thursday and Friday for one or two days of discussions. I will let you know his attitude and then we can decide whether we can go ahead on the treaty negotiations. Khalil was very helpful, but Dayan had no authority to negotiate. Therefore, it would be good for me to get together with Begin and then you or Khalil can join me for three-way negotiations, if that is possible. I will give you a thorough report.

Sadat: You have to know that I have no more concessions to make. I shall be getting your assessment.

[Page 636]The President: Will you let me negotiate for Egypt and make concessions for you?3

Sadat: On the linkage and priority issues I cannot.

The President: I won’t do anything until I get back to you. I will keep you fully informed and appreciate your attitude. I look forward to seeing you.

Sadat: The whole thing is nearly complete. All it needs is your decisiveness with the Israelis. Look at what is happening in the area.

The President: I will do the best I can, but don’t overestimate what I can do. Be patient and trust in me, and we will have success.4

Sadat: We will help you. We have given them everything already.

The President: I will negotiate with Begin and be back to you as soon as possible.

Sadat: I shall never let you down.

  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Staff Material, Office, Outside the System File, Box 66, Middle East: President Carter’s Trip to Jerusalem and Cairo: 2–4/79. Secret. At the top of the transcript, Carter wrote: “OK, J.” According to the President’s Daily Diary, Carter spoke with Sadat from the Oval Office. (Carter Library, Presidential Materials)
  2. See Document 188.
  3. A handwritten notation next to this sentence reads, “(laughter).”
  4. A handwritten notation inserted after this sentence reads, “You overestimate our influence with Israel, & they overestimate my influence with you.”