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The Coup of 1952
World War II (1939-1945) suspended further political bargaining. The war years brought inflation, interparty strife, and disillusion with the Wafd. Fundamentalist religious organizations, such as the Muslim Brotherhood, and Communist groups developed.In 1948 Egypt and several other Arab states went to war in an unsuccessful attempt to prevent the establishment of the state of Israel. Blaming the government for its loss, the army turned against King Faruk, Fuad's son, who showed no aptitude for government and a blatant disregard for public well-being and morality. In 1952 a group of army officers carried out a successful coup d'etat that ousted the king and in 1953 declared Egypt a republic.
Egypt as a republic :
The first president of the republic, General Muhammad Naguib, was a figurehead. The real leader was Gamal Abdel Nasser of the Revolutionary Command Council, the officers who had plotted the revolution. In April 1954 Nasser became prime minister. In November of that year, Naguib was removed from power, and Nasser assumed complete executive authority. In July 1956 Nasser was officially elected president.
At first Nasser followed a pro-Western policy and successfully negotiated the evacuation of British forces from Egypt in 1954. Soon he turned to a policy of neutrality and solidarity with other African and Asian nations and became an advocate of Arab unity.
The Suez Crisis
In efforts to acquire armaments, which the Western world would not supply to Egypt, Nasser turned to the Eastern bloc. In retaliation, the World Bank turned down Egypt's request for a loan to finance the Aswan High Dam project. Nasser therefore nationalized the Suez Canal and sought to use its revenues to finance the dam. Angered by that move, Britain and France, the main stockholders in the canal, joined with Israel in attacking Egypt in 1956. Pressure from the United States and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) forced the three countries to evacuate Egyptian territory, and United Nations (UN) forces were placed as a buffer between Egypt and Israel.
Pursuing his dream of Arab unity, Nasser in 1958 effected a union between Egypt and Syria under the name of the United Arab Republic. Although it lasted only three years before the Syrians rebelled and reaffirmed their independence, Egypt retained the official name of the republic for many years afterward.
Within Egypt the Nasser regime suppressed political opposition and established a one-party system as a means of reforming political life. A series of decrees limited land ownership and undermined the authority of the landowning elite. In 1961 foreign capital invested in Egypt was nationalized, as were public utilities and local industries, all of which became part of the public sector. This new order, which Nasser called Arab Socialism, aimed at greater social equality and economic growth. In 1962 a national charter was drawn up, and the official National Union Party was renamed the Arab Socialist Union. Women, who had been emancipated earlier, were elected to the union, as were workers. The first woman cabinet minister was appointed.
Wars of the 1960s
In 1962 Egypt became embroiled in a civil war in Yemen, backing a republican movement against monarchist forces. This venture cost lives and money and left the country weakened. In 1967 Nasser, continuing the Arab struggle against Israel, closed the Strait of Tiran to Israeli shipping and requested that the UN forces be withdrawn from the border. The Israelis, believing that Nasser was preparing for war, struck first, attacking and destroying Egyptian airfields and positions in the Sinai. Israeli forces advanced until they reached the right bank of the Suez Canal. This Six-Day War left Israel in possession of the whole Sinai Peninsula. The UN Security Council called for Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories. Israel Did decline and continued to occupy the Sinai. When negotiations seemed to be leading nowhere, Nasser turned to the USSR, which rearmed Egypt in return for a naval base.Nasser died suddenly in 1970. Problems of succession to the post of president were settled when Vice President Anwar El-Sadat, a long-time colleague of Nasser, was chosen to succeed him.
The Sadat Regime
Sadat was elected by opposing political factions as a compromise candidate, on the assumption that he could be manipulated. The new president, however, outwitted his would-be puppeteers and, with the support of the army, put them under arrest. He freed political prisoners who had been incarcerated by Nasser for opposing his policies, and called for a regime of economic and political liberalization, especially for the press, which Nasser had strictly controlled.
The 6th of october war
clashes between Egypt and Israel had continued after 1969, and this “war of attrition” had resulted in high Egyptian casualties and burdensome military expenditures. Sadat tried to find a way out of that impress negotiation. successfully he secretly planned a for a war to free the occupied sinai from Israel. He first repaired his fences with the Arab states, especially Saudi Arabia, which financed arms purchases from the Soviet Union. Then, on October 6, 1973, on the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur and during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan(10th of Ramadan), Egypt launched an air and artillery counterattack across the Suez Canal. Within hours, thousands of Egyptian soldiers had successfully crossed into the Sinai. Protected by a missile umbrella that destroyed Israeli aircrafts, they overran and captured the string of Israeli fortifications known as the Bar-Lev line. Israel was caught unprepared. It was a total victory . By the middle of the month, however, with immidate aid from the united states ,it had regained the initiative and was able to encircle Egyptian units on the outskirts of Suez. The United Nations then imposed a cease-fire, and an armistice line patrolled by UN forces was eventually established between the Egyptian and the Israeli armies.
peace treaty with Isreal
After the war Sadat was ready for negotiations. In 1974 and 1975 Egypt and Israel concluded agreements—again mediated by Kissinger—providing disengagement on the Sinai front. In June 1975 Egypt reopened the Suez Canal, permitting passage to ships carrying Israeli cargoes. Israel withdrew beyond the strategic passes and from some of the oil fields in the Sinai.Meanwhile, Egypt's economic position was growing rapidly worse; by early 1976 the country's debt to the USSR was estimated at $4 billion. The following year, surprising all, Sadat asked the Soviet military advisers to leave the country and threw his lot in with the United States, declaring it held the key to peace in the Middle East. Even more surprising, on November 19, 1977, Sadat flew to Israel and addressed the Knesset (parliament) . The historic journey was followed by further negotiations under U.S. auspices. At a tripartite conference with U.S. president Jimmy Carter at Camp David, Maryland, in September 1978, Sadat and Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin agreed on a framework for an Israeli-Egyptian settlement. A peace treaty between the two nations, based on the Camp David accords, was signed in Washington, D.C., on March 26, 1979.