When was the first known international call between two heads of state or government?

When was the first known international call between two heads of state or government?

A number of international phone connections were established a little before or just after 1900:

  • Paris - Brussles phone line in 1886

  • England - France cross-Channel telephone cable in 1891

  • Britain - Belgium telephone service in 1903

Prior to these, the first ever international call was apparently made in 1881 (New Brunswick, Canada - Maine, USA).

With President Rutherford B. Hayes installing the White House's first telephone in 1877 and British Prime Minister William Gladstone doing likewise at 10 Downing Street in around 1884, at least two world leaders saw the potential for rapid communication early on. William McKinley (1897 - 1901) was also keen on the new gadget, being the first to use it for a US presidential campaign.

As the first transatlantic call was not possible until January 1927, these leaders would obviously not have been able to talk to each other but there were other (early) possibilities, most obviously perhaps in Europe. One or more calls between the British and French leaders during World War I seems a distinct possibility but I haven't been able to find any evidence.

Churchill and Roosevelt were phoning each other even before Churchill became Prime Minister in May 1940, but this was 50 years after the first international phone lines were laid down, and more than ten years after transatlantic calls started. There were several major events (not least World War I) during these years and thus potentially plenty of reasons for leaders to want to communicate quickly and personally.

When was the first (known) time the leaders of two countries spoke to each other, either by radiotelephone or telephone?

Note: I'm only interested in spoken communication. In countries with a monarchy, either the monarch or the prime minister, chancellor, e.t.c. (i.e. Head of Government) would be acceptable as a 'leader' for the purposes of this question. A governor general or representative of a dominion or colony would be of secondary interest.

First Presidential Call to a foreign leader

President Coolidge conducts the first transatlantic phone call with a foreign leader, the King of Spain in 1927 (Library of Congress)

The first official transatlantic phone call happened on January 7, 1927, between New York and London. A year and a half later (June of 1928 ?), Calvin Coolidge became the first president to connect with a foreign official in Europe, Alfonso III of Spain.

After thanking the king for Spain's support of the Kellog-Briand Pact, an international treaty meant to prevent the use of war as a method for resolving disputes, Coolidge launched into a soliloquy on the value of the new technological wonder:

First off planet phone call 1969
In 1969, Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon, and soon after their moon shoes touched the lunar surface, they received a phone call from the President of the United States, Richard Nixon. “Hello Neil and Buzz, I am talking to you by telephone from the Oval Room at the White House, and this certainly has to be the most historic telephone call ever made from the White House.”

1878, Queen victoria's first Call
Bell demonstrated the telephone to Queen Victoria on 14 January 1878 at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight with calls to London, Cowes and Southampton. These were the first long-distance calls in the UK.


1879 British thoughts on the Telephone
This year, Mr. William Preece (later Sir William Preece) of the Post Office Engineering staff, when asked whether the telephone would be an instrument of the future which would be largely taken up by the public, replied “I think not”. Questioned further he said “I fancy the descriptions we get of its use in America are a little exaggerated; but there are conditions in America which necessitate the use of instruments of this kind more than here. Here we have a superabundance of messengers, errand boys, and things of that kind.”


April 1, 1891: First cross-Channel telephone cable between England and France opened to the public

  • (Available only between )specially-equipped booths in London and Paris.
  • (Used) mostly by the London and Paris stock exchanges, journalists and commercial organizations.
  • it could enable only two simultaneous calls at one time

The Laos Crisis, 1960–1963

The first foreign policy crisis faced by President-elect John F. Kennedy was not centered in Berlin, nor in Cuba, nor in the islands off the Chinese mainland, nor in Vietnam, nor in any of the better-known hot spots of the Cold War, but in landlocked, poverty stricken Laos. This was the major issue Kennedy and his foreign policy team—Secretary of State Dean Rusk , Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara , and National Security Advisor McGeorge Bundy —focused on during the days leading up to Kennedy’s inauguration on January 20, 1961.

Kennedy met with President Eisenhower the day before his inauguration with two goals in mind. He expected the meeting to “serve a specific purpose in reassuring the public as to the harmony of the transition. Therefore strengthening our hand.” His substantive focus was on Laos. “I was anxious,” he recounted to his secretary, “to get some commitment from the outgoing administration as to how they would deal with Laos which they were handing to us. I thought particularly it would be useful to have some idea as to how prepared they were for intervention.”

The Eisenhower administration was leaving Kennedy a confused, complex, and intractable situation. Laos was a victim of geography: a RAND study of the period summarized the nation as “Hardly a nation except in the legal sense, Laos lacked the ability to defend its recent independence. Its economy was undeveloped, its administrative capacity primitive, its population divided both ethnically and regionally, and its elite disunited, corrupt, and unfit to lead.” But this surpassingly weak state was the “cork in the bottle,” as Eisenhower summarized in his meeting with Kennedy the outgoing President expected its loss to be “the beginning of the loss of most of the Far East.”

The Eisenhower administration had worked for years to create a strong anti-Communist bastion in Laos, a bulwark against Communist China and North Vietnam. While attractive on a map, this strategy was completely at odds with the characteristics of the Laotian state and people. By 1961, Laos was fragmented politically, with three factions vying for control. The United States had thrown its support behind General Nosavan Phoumi, whose forces were engaged in combat with a neutralist force under Kong Le. Soviet aircraft were conducting resupply missions for Kong Le’s forces. Neutralist leader and former Prime Minister Souvanna Phouma had gone into exile in Cambodia, but remained influential and active in Laotian politics. His half-brother, Souphanouverong, led the Communist-dominated Pathet Lao, which had established control over an extensive area along the Laos-North Vietnam border. Phoumi’s forces had little popular support, had proven ineffective in combat, and appeared to be well on their way to a military defeat.

The Eisenhower administration had led the creation of the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization for precisely this sort of contingency. In this first major test, however, the United States was unable to secure the alliance’s support for intervention. Its major European powers, Great Britain and France, considered Phoumi an illegitimate ruler and supported Souvanna Phouma they were adamantly opposed to taking military action in Laos. An interagency analysis prepared in January 1961 summarized, “Since SEATO was created to act in circumstances such as that now existing in Laos but has not acted, it casts doubt not only on its own credibility but on the reliability of the United States as its originator . . . SEATO becomes a means by which restraint is imposed on us by our allies.” As the Eisenhower administration reached its final days, the United States was faced with the prospect of unilateral military intervention in a desperate attempt to salvage the situation. Beyond the vast logistics issues associated with intervention, the insertion of U.S. forces raised the substantial risk of a U.S.-Soviet military confrontation.

Kennedy faced a choice between two unpromising strategies: pursue a military solution, very likely demanding a unilateral intervention by U.S. forces or adapt a major shift in policy, seeking a cease-fire and a neutralization of Laos. He rejected the military option, though he encouraged an offensive by Phoumi designed to strengthen his negotiating position. It failed abjectly. Kennedy opened his press conference on March 23, 1961, with an extended discussion of Laos, calling for an end to hostilities and negotiations leading to a neutralized and independent Laos. The Pathet Lao accepted the ceasefire offer on May 3. This delay gave the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) the time to conduct an offensive in southern Laos, capturing the crossroad village of Tchepone and the terrain necessary to extend the Ho Chi Minh Trail to the western side of the Annamite Mountains on the border between Laos and South Vietnam. Laos was a major topic at the Vienna Summit on June 4, with Kennedy and Soviet Premier Nikita Khruschev agreeing on a common goal of a ceasefire, neutrality, and a coalition government as Khruschev summarized, “the basic question is to bring about agreement among the three forces in Laos, so that the formation of a truly neutral government could be secured.” Kennedy considered Laos a test case for the prospects of U.S.-Soviet cooperation, in areas where the superpowers could reach common objectives and avoid confrontation.

Kennedy appointed W. Averell Harriman as Ambassador at Large in the first days of his administration, and then formalized Harriman’s policy role in appointing him Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs the following November. Harriman took the lead in orchestrating American policy toward Laos as an international conference on Laos convened in Geneva on May 16. The fourteen nations involved included the U.S.S.R., Laos, People’s Republic of China, North Vietnam, South Vietnam, Poland, the United States, France, the United Kingdom, India, Burma, Cambodia, Canada, and Thailand. Meanwhile the three Laotian factions conducted negotiations on the composition of a coalition government. By the following March Harriman had become disenchanted with Phoumi, and decisively shifted American policy toward a coalition government led by Souvanna Phouma. The Laotian groups reached agreement on the composition of the coalition government on June 12, 1962, and the Geneva conference reached agreement on the Declaration on the Neutrality of Laos on July 23.

These agreements provided for a coalition government in Laos under Souvanna Phouma , with cabinet positions distributed among the three factions. The Declaration on the Neutrality of Laos and its associated protocols called for the withdrawal of all “foreign regular and irregular troops, foreign para-military formations and foreign military personnel” under the supervision of the International Commission for Supervision and Control in Laos (ICC), comprised of representatives of India, Poland, and Canada. The ICC would operate on the principle of unanimity, a change from its practice from 1954 to 1958, when it operated under majority rules. Integration and demobilization of the three Laotian armies would be conducted by the coalition government, with neither the ICC nor other international parties overseeing or enforcing these critical activities.

These agreements broke down quickly, with lasting consequences for Laos and its neighbors. The NVA conducted a symbolic withdrawal of 15 troops on August 27, and on October 9 North Vietnam notified the Laotian foreign ministry that their troops had been withdrawn in accordance with the Geneva agreement. However, North Vietnam continued its advisory, logistics, and combat in support of the Pathet Lao in violation of the accords. North Vietnam also continued to extend its territorial control in southern Laos to secure its logistics lines to the battle areas in South Vietnam. The United States withdrew its military advisory teams in compliance with the Geneva agreement, but in its aftermath responded to the North Vietnamese violation by supporting Meo and Thai forces, and by providing economic and military support to the Phouma government and its army.

___ History of Afghanistan

The Pre-Islamic Period: Archaeological evidence indicates that urban civilization began in the region occupied by modern Afghanistan between 3000 and 2000 B.C. The first historical documents date from the early part of the Iranian Achaemenian Dynasty, which controlled the region from 550 B.C. until 331 B.C. Between 330 and 327 B.C., Alexander the Great defeated the Achaemenian emperor Darius III and subdued local resistance in the territory that is now Afghanistan. Alexander’s successors, the Seleucids, continued to infuse the region with Greek cultural influence. Shortly thereafter, the Mauryan Empire of India gained control of southern Afghanistan, bringing with it Buddhism. In the mid-third century B.C., nomadic Kushans established an empire that became a cultural and commercial center. From the end of the Kushan Empire in the third century A.D. until the seventh century, the region was fragmented and under the general protection of the Iranian Sassanian Empire.

The Islamic and Mongol Conquests: After defeating the Sassanians at the Battle of Qadisiya in 637, Arab Muslims began a 100-year process of conquering the Afghan tribes and introducing Islam. By the tenth century, the rule of the Arab Abbasid Dynasty and its successor in Central Asia, the Samanid dynasty, had crumbled. The Ghaznavid Dynasty, an offshoot of the Samanids, then became the first great Islamic dynasty to rule in Afghanistan. In 1220 all of Central Asia fell to the Mongol forces of Genghis Khan. Afghanistan remained fragmented until the 1380s, when Timur consolidated and expanded the existing Mongol Empire. Timur’s descendants ruled Afghanistan until the early sixteenth century.

Ahmad Shāh Durrānī (c.1723–1773), the founder of the Durrani Empire and regarded as the founder of present-day Afghanistan.

The Pashtun Rulers: In 1504 the region fell under a new empire, the Mughals of northern India, who for the next two centuries contested Afghan territory with the Iranian Safavi Dynasty. With the death of the great Safavi leader Nadir Shah in 1747, indigenous Pashtuns, who became known as the Durrani, began a period of at least nominal rule in Afghanistan that lasted until 1978. The first Durrani ruler, Ahmad Shah, known as the founder of the Afghan nation, united the Pashtun tribes and by 1760 built an empire extending to Delhi and the Arabian Sea. The empire fragmented after Ahmad Shah’s death in 1772, but in 1826 Dost Mohammad, the leader of the Pashtun Muhammadzai tribe, restored order.

Dost Mohammad Khan (1793-1863) was Emir of Afghanistan from 1826–1839 and 1845–1863. He was was the founder of the Barakzai dynasty, the two branches of the Barakzai dynasty Afghanistan from 1826 to 1973 when the monarchy finally ended under Mohammad Zahir Shah.

The Great Game: Dost Mohammad ruled at the beginning of the Great Game, a century-long contest for domination of Central Asia and Afghanistan between Russia, which was expanding to the south, and Britain, which was intent on protecting India. During this period, Afghan rulers were able to maintain virtual independence, although some compromises were necessary. In the First Anglo-Afghan War (1839–42), the British deposed Dost Mohammad, but they abandoned their Afghan garrisons in 1842. In the following decades, Russian forces approached the northern border of Afghanistan. In 1878 the British invaded and held most of Afghanistan in the Second Anglo-Afghan War.

Amir Abdur Rahman was Emir of Afghanistan from 1880 to 1901.

In 1880 Abdur Rahman, a Durrani, began a 21-year reign that saw the balancing of British and Russian interests, the consolidation of the Afghan tribes, and the reorganization of civil administration into what is considered the modern Afghan state. During this period, the British secured the Durand Line (1893), dividing Afghanistan from British colonial territory to the southeast and sowing the seeds of future tensions over the division of the Pashtun tribes. Abdur Rahman’s son Habibullah (ruled 1901–19) continued his father’s administrative reforms and maintained Afghanistan’s neutrality in World War I.

Full Independence and Soviet Occupation: In 1919 Afghanistan signed the Treaty of Rawalpindi, which ended the Third Anglo- Afghan War and marks Afghanistan’s official date of independence. In the interwar period, Afghanistan again was a balancing point between two world powers Habibullah’s son Amanullah (ruled 1919–29) skillfully manipulated the new British-Soviet rivalry and established relations with major countries. Amanullah introduced his country’s first constitution in 1923. However, resistance to his domestic reform program forced his abdication in 1929. In 1933 Amanullah’s nephew Mohammad Zahir Shah, the last king of Afghanistan, began a 40-year reign.

After World War II, in which Afghanistan remained neutral, the long-standing division of the Pashtun tribes caused tension with the neighboring state of Pakistan, founded on the other side of the Durand Line in 1948. In response, Afghanistan shifted its foreign policy toward the Soviet Union. The prime minister ship of the king’s cousin Mohammad Daoud (1953–63) was cautiously reformist, modernizing and centralizing the government while strengthening ties with the Soviet Union. However, in 1963 Zahir Shah dismissed Daoud because his anti-Pakistani policy had damaged Afghanistan’s economy.

Mohammad Zahir Shah
, the last King (Badshah) of Afghanistan, reigning for four decades, from 1933 until he was ousted by a coup in 1973.

A new constitution, ratified in 1964, liberalized somewhat the constitutional monarchy. However, in the ensuing decade economic and political conditions worsened. In 1973 Daoud overthrew the king and established a republic. When economic conditions did not improve and Daoud lost most of his political support, communist factions overthrew him in 1978. In 1979 the threat of tribal insurgency against the communist government triggered an invasion by 80,000 Soviet troops, who then endured a very effective decade- long guerrilla war. Between 1979 and 1989, two Soviet-sponsored regimes failed to defeat the loose federation of mujahideen guerrillas [who were supported by the US, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia, note from the editor] that opposed the occupation. In 1988 the Soviet Union agreed to create a neutral Afghan state, and the last Soviet troops left Afghanistan in 1989. The agreement ended a war that killed thousands, devastated industry and agriculture, and created 5 to 6 million refugees.

Civil War and the Taliban: The 1988 agreement did not settle differences between the government and the mujahideen, and in 1992 Afghanistan descended into a civil war that further ravaged the economy. Among the leaders of the warring factions were Ahmad Shah Massoud, an ethnic Tajik Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, a Pashtun and Abdul Rashid Dostum, an Uzbek. Despite several temporary alliances, struggles among the armed groups continued until one Islamic fundamentalist group, the Taliban, gained control of most of the country in 1996. The Taliban used an extremist interpretation of Islam to assert repressive control of society. The economy remained in ruins, and most government services ceased.

The Taliban granted the Arab terrorist organization al Qaeda the right to use Afghanistan as a base. As al Qaeda committed a series of international terrorist acts culminating in attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, the Taliban rejected international pressure to surrender al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. When the United States and allies attacked Afghanistan in the fall of 2001, the Taliban government collapsed, but Taliban and al Qaeda leaders escaped. A United States–led International Security Assistance Force began an occupation that is still in place in 2008.

Rebuilding the Country: In December 2001, Afghan leaders in exile signed the Bonn Agreement, forming an interim government, the Afghan Interim Administration, under the leadership of the Pashtun moderate Hamid Karzai. In 2002 Karzai was selected president of the Transitional Islamic State of Afghanistan, whose ruling council included disparate leaders of the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance. A new constitution, written by a specially convened Loya Jirga, or constituent assembly of regional leaders, was ratified in early 2004. In October 2004, an overwhelming popular vote elected Karzai president of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. However, regional warlords and large areas of Afghanistan remained beyond the control of the Karzai government. Despite substantial international aid, the Afghan government, which included representatives from many factions, was unable to address numerous social and economic problems. The parliamentary elections of September 2005 gave regional warlords substantial power in both houses of the National Assembly, further jeopardizing Karzai’s ability to unite the country. The Bonn Agreement lapsed after the 2005 elections.

Determined to end the tragic conflict in Afghanistan and promote national reconciliation, lasting peace, stability and respect for human rights in the country
The participants in the UN Talks on Afghanistan of the Afghan Bonn Agreement - December 2001
The agreement’s successor, the Afghanistan Compact, went into effect in January 2006 to set goals for international assistance in economic development, security, protection of human rights, and the fight against corruption and drug trafficking through 2010.

Hamid Karzai
, President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, U.S. President Barack Obama and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari at an US-Afghan-Pakistan Trilateral meeting in May 2009.

How to Read the Convention

Very few of the delegates selected were present at the appointed time for the meeting of the Grand Convention in Philadelphia on May 14, 1787. All the Virginia delegates were present, however, and fully settled into their accommodations. Washington stayed at Robert Morris’s Town House, and Madison secured lodgings across the street at Mrs. House’s Boarding House. During this waiting period, the Virginia delegates caucused with each other in an attempt to set the tone for the deliberations of the Convention and paid courtesy calls on prominent members of Philadelphia society. Some entered a Catholic church for the first time.

On May 25, a quorum of seven states was secured. The first order of business was to elect a President, and George Washington was the obvious choice. William Jackson, yet another immigrant at the Convention, was elected Secretary of the Convention and he recorded the propositions and amendments as well as the vote tabulation.

James Madison took extensive Notes of the proceedings and although some scholars have questioned their authenticity and completeness, they remain the primary source for reproducing the conversations at the Convention. Other delegates kept specific notes on certain days, there are letters back home to friends and loved ones, there are urgent bills sent for immediate payment that augment, and there are personal diaries, some more complete than others. Nothing, however, can compete with, or ever replace, Madison’s Notes.

The delegates also agreed that the deliberations would be kept secret. The case in favor of secrecy was that the issues at hand were so important that honest discourse needed to be encouraged and delegates ought to feel free to speak their mind, and change their mind, as they saw fit. Thus, despite the hot summer weather in Philadelphia, and delegates who, on the whole, were rather overweight and hardly “dressed down” for the occasion, the windows were closed and heavy drapes drawn. The merits and demerits of the secrecy rule have been a subject of considerable debate throughout American history.

Act One of the Convention

In Act One of the Convention, Governor Randolph introduces the fifteen point Virginia Plan at the end of May to “revise the Articles of Confederation.” The decisive features of this plan are 1) the complete structural exclusion of the states in terms of both election and representation 2) the complete diminution of the powers of the states and the virtual freedom of Congress to act in those areas for which the states are incompetent 3) the establishment of an extended national republic with institutional separation of powers and the introduction of the possibility that short terms of office and term limits——standard features of traditional republicanism——will be abandoned. Under the wholly federal Articles of Confederation, only the states are represented and the central government was restrained to the exercise of expressly delegated powers. And under the state republican constitutions, the governor had very little authority, and the elected representatives were kept under close scrutiny. Madison’s Virginia Plan introduces a new understanding of federalism and republicanism. This wholly national republican plan is debated, and amended, over the next two weeks, and the main features are adopted by the delegates in mid June over two alternatives: the wholly federal, or state based, New Jersey Plan, that argues that the Virginia Plan goes too far, and the Hamilton Plan that claims the Virginia Plan does not go far enough. Hamilton, among other things, envisioned a President for life.

Act Two of the Convention

Act Two portrays the Convention in crisis, in the sense that the delegates were at a stalemate. Far from the wholly national republican Virginia Plan being accepted, as we might very well anticipate when the curtain fell at the end of Act One, the delegates from Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, New York, and Mr. Martin from Maryland,— the defenders of the New Jersey Plan, the old style federalism of the Articles, and the old fashioned republicanism of the state constitutions— insisted on questioning the validity of the Virginia Plan. They argued that the Convention had exceeded the Congressional mandate because the Articles had in fact been scrapped rather than revised. Thus the Convention had violated the rule of law. Moreover, the Convention was about to propose a novelty——a large country under one republican form of government——that would never be accepted by the electorate. These delegates knew their Locke and Montesquieu and they relied on their own political experience which was remarkably extensive: republican government could only exist in areas of small extent where the people kept close watch over their representatives.

A breakthrough occurs at the end of June when Oliver Ellsworth of Connecticut suggests that we are neither wholly national nor wholly federal but a mixture of both. Several delegates echo this theme and the Convention decides to move beyond the exclusively national or federal paradigms. The Gerry Committee is created to explore the ramifications of this suggestion that the people be represented in the House and the states be represented in the Senate. This recommendation——the Connecticut Compromise——is accepted over Madison’s objections in mid-July.

Act Three of the Convention

Act Three focuses on the debates during August over the Committee of Detail Report, especially concerning the itemization of Congressional powers. With the Connecticut Compromise in place, the delegates turned from the question of structure to the question of national and state powers. Under the Virginia Plan, Congress was empowered to do anything the States were incompetent to do. By July, that was no longer acceptable to the delegates. A Committee was created to draft a Constitution——the Committee of Detail——that would address the division of powers between the central and state governments and also the separation of powers between Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court.

Another issue that emerged in Act Three is the slavery question. What could Congress do and not do to regulate and/or abolish slavery? This is a vital question and deserves special coverage. It is instructive to compare the clause in the Committee of Detail Report of August 6 with the Signed Constitution of September 17. The former forbids Congress from ever regulating the slave trade and prohibits Congress from discouraging the trade by means of a tax or tariff. By contrast the final Constitution, limits the prohibition on Congress until 1808 and permits Congress to discourage the slave trade. In March, 1807, President Jefferson signed into law an Act of Congress prohibiting the slave trade effective January 1, 1808, and during the 1790s Congress took specific steps to discourage the importation of Africans for the purpose of being sold into slavery.

Act Four of the Convention

Act Four covers the final three weeks of the Convention during the month of September. Despite all the progress that had been made on the structural role of the states and enumerating the powers of Congress, there was much work still to be done on the Presidency. The Brearley Committee came up with the idea of an Electoral College as a sensible compromise to the long and largely fruitless debates on how to elect the President. It had been clear for four months that until the mode of election was settled, no progress could be made on 1) length of term, 2) the issue of re-eligibility, and 3) the powers of the President. The Electoral College was modeled on the Connecticut Compromise: the President would be elected by a combination of people and states.

The Committee of Style wrote the final draft of the Constitution. It included a Preamble and an obligation of contracts clause, both written by Gouverneur Morris, and an enumeration of the powers of Congress in Article I, Section 8. During the last week of the Convention the delegates added a few refinements, raised some serious concerns, and discussed what they agreed to over the four months of deliberations. Mason expressed the wish that “the plan had been prefaced by a Bill of Rights.” Elbridge Gerry supported Mason’s unsuccessful attempt to attach a Bill of Rights. Randolph joined Mason and Gerry and declared that he too wouldn’t sign the Constitution. And the delegates wondered whether or not the power to create a national university was implied within the meaning of the necessary and proper clause.

On the last day of the Convention, September 17, Benjamin Franklin looked at the chair occupied by Washington and declared the sun enshrined on the chair to be a rising sun. Many delegates over the four months of deliberation often thought that it was a setting sun.

___ History of Algeria

North Africa During the Classical Period: Phoenician traders arrived on the North African coast around 900 B.C. and established Carthage (in present-day Tunisia) around 800 B.C. During the classical period, Berber civilization was already at a stage in which agriculture, manufacturing, trade, and political organization supported several states. Trade links between Carthage and the Berbers in the interior grew, but territorial expansion also brought about the enslavement or military recruitment of some Berbers and the extraction of tribute from others. The Carthaginian state declined because of successive defeats by the Romans in the Punic Wars, and in 146 B.C. the city of Carthage was destroyed. As Carthaginian power waned, the influence of Berber leaders in the hinterland grew. By the second century B.C., several large but loosely administered Berber kingdoms had emerged.

Berber territory was annexed to the Roman Empire in A.D. 24. Increases in urbanization and in the area under cultivation during Roman rule caused wholesale dislocations of Berber society, and Berber opposition to the Roman presence was nearly constant. The prosperity of most towns depended on agriculture, and the region was known as the “granary of the empire.” Christianity arrived in the second century. By the end of the fourth century, the settled areas had become Christianized, and some Berber tribes had converted en masse.

Islam and the Arabs: The first Arab military expeditions into the Maghrib, between 642 and 669, resulted in the spread of Islam. By 711 the Umayyads (a Muslim dynasty based in Damascus from 661 to 750), helped by Berber converts to Islam, had conquered all of North Africa. In 750 the Abbasids succeeded the Umayyads as Muslim rulers and moved the caliphate to Baghdad. Under the Abbasids, the Rustumid imamate (761-909) actually ruled most of the central Maghrib from Tahirt, southwest of Algiers. The imams gained a reputation for honesty, piety, and justice, and the court of Tahirt was noted for its support of scholarship. The Rustumid imams failed, however, to organize a reliable standing army, which opened the way for Tahirt's demise under the assault of the Fatimid dynasty. With their interest focused primarily on Egypt and Muslim lands beyond, the Fatimids left the rule of most of Algeria to the Zirids (972-1148), a Berber dynasty that centered significant local power in Algeria for the first time. This period was marked by constant conflict, political instability, and economic decline. Following a large incursion of Arab bedouins from Egypt beginning in the first half of the eleventh century, the use of Arabic spread to the countryside, and sedentary Berbers were gradually Arabized.

The Almoravid (“those who have made a religious retreat”) movement developed early in the eleventh century among the Sanhaja Berbers of the western Sahara. The movement's initial impetus was religious, an attempt by a tribal leader to impose moral discipline and strict adherence to Islamic principles on followers. But the Almoravid movement shifted to engaging in military conquest after 1054. By 1106 the Almoravids had conquered Morocco, the Maghrib as far east as Algiers, and Spain up to the Ebro River.
Like the Almoravids, the Almohads (“unitarians”) found their inspiration in Islamic reform. The Almohads took control of Morocco by 1146, captured Algiers around 1151, and by 1160 had completed the conquest of the central Maghrib. The zenith of Almohad power occurred between 1163 and 1199. For the first time, the Maghrib was united under a local regime, but the continuing wars in Spain overtaxed the resources of the Almohads, and in the Maghrib their position was compromised by factional strife and a renewal of tribal warfare. In the central Maghrib, the Zayanids founded a dynasty at Tlemcen in Algeria. For more than 300 years, until the region came under Ottoman suzerainty in the sixteenth century, the Zayanids kept a tenuous hold in the central Maghrib. Many coastal cities asserted their autonomy as municipal republics governed by merchant oligarchies, tribal chieftains from the surrounding countryside, or the privateers who operated out of their ports. Nonetheless, Tlemcen, the “pearl of the Maghrib,” prospered as a commercial center.

Painting of Khair ad Din, also known as Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha, considered to be the founder of modern Algeria.
The final triumph of the 700-year Christian reconquest of Spain was marked by the fall of Granada in 1492. Christian Spain imposed its influence on the Maghrib coast by constructing fortified outposts and collecting tribute. But Spain never sought to extend its North African conquests much beyond a few modest enclaves. Privateering was an age-old practice in the Mediterranean, and North African rulers engaged in it increasingly in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries because it was so lucrative. Algeria became the privateering city-state par excellence, and two privateer brothers were instrumental in extending Ottoman influence in Algeria. At about the time Spain was establishing its presidios in the Maghrib, the Muslim privateer brothers Aruj and Khair ad Din-the latter known to Europeans as Barbarossa, or Red Beard-were operating successfully off Tunisia. In 1516 Aruj moved his base of operations to Algiers but was killed in 1518. Khair ad Din succeeded him as military commander of Algiers, and the Ottoman sultan gave him the title of beylerbey (provincial governor). Under Khair ad Din's regency, Algiers became the center of Ottoman authority in the Maghrib. Subsequently, with the institution of a regular Ottoman administration, governors with the title of pasha ruled. Turkish was the official language, and Arabs and Berbers were excluded from government posts. In 1671 a new leader assumed power, adopting the title of dey. In 1710 the dey persuaded the sultan to recognize him and his successors as regent, replacing the pasha in that role. Although Algiers remained a part of the Ottoman Empire, the Ottoman government ceased to have effective influence there.

European maritime powers paid the tribute exacted by the rulers of the privateering states of North Africa (Algiers, Tunis, Tripoli [today Libya], and Morocco) to prevent attacks on their shipping. The Napoleonic wars of the early nineteenth century diverted the attention of the maritime powers from suppressing what they derogatorily called piracy. But when peace was restored to Europe in 1815, Algiers found itself at war with Spain, the Netherlands, Prussia [Germany], Denmark, Russia, and Naples [Italy]. In March of that year, the U.S. Congress also authorized naval action against the so-called Barbary States.
France in Algeria:

The capture of Constantine, picture detail of a painting by Horace Vernet (1789-1863)

As a result of what the French considered an insult to the French consul in Algiers by the dey [Husayn Dey] in 1827, France blockaded Algiers for three years. France then used the failure of the blockade as a reason for a military expedition against Algiers in 1830. By 1848 nearly all of northern Algeria was under French control, and the new government of the Second Republic declared the occupied lands an integral part of France. Three "civil territories Algiers, Oran, and Constantine were organized as French départements (local administrative units) under a civilian government. Colons (colonists), or, more popularly, pieds noirs (literally, black feet) dominated the government and controlled the bulk of Algeria's wealth. Throughout the colonial era, they continued to block or delay all attempts to implement even the most modest reforms. From 1933 to 1936, mounting social, political, and economic crises in Algeria induced the indigenous population to engage in numerous acts of political protest, but the government responded with more restrictive laws governing public order and security. Algerian Muslims rallied to the French side at the start of World War II as they had done in World War I. But the colons were generally sympathetic to the collaborationist Vichy regime established following France's defeat by Nazi Germany.

Ferhat Abbas on TIME magazine 13. October 1958.
Ferhat Abbas was an Algerian nationalist leader. He was president of the Algerian provisional government from 1958 and then president of the constituent assembly of independent Algeria 1962–63.
In March 1943, Muslim leader Ferhat Abbas presented the French administration with the Manifesto of the Algerian People, signed by 56 Algerian nationalist and international leaders. The manifesto demanded an Algerian constitution that would guarantee immediate and effective political participation and legal equality for Muslims. Instead, the French administration in 1944 instituted a reform package based on the 1936 Viollette Plan that granted full French citizenship only to certain categories of "meritorious" Algerian Muslims, who numbered about 60,000. The tensions between the Muslim and colon communities exploded on May 8, 1945, V-E Day. When a Muslim march was met with violence, marchers rampaged. The army and police responded by conducting a prolonged and systematic ratissage (literally, raking over) of suspected centers of dissidence. According to official French figures, 1,500 Muslims died as a result of these countermeasures. Other estimates vary from 6,000 to as high as 45,000 killed.
In August 1947, the French National Assembly approved the government-proposed Organic Statute of Algeria. This law called for the creation of an Algerian Assembly with one house representing Europeans and "meritorious" Muslims and the other representing the remaining 8 million or more Muslims. Muslim and colon deputies alike abstained or voted against the statute but for diametrically opposed reasons: the Muslims because it fell short of their expectations and the colons because it went too far.

War of Independence: In the early morning hours of November 1, 1954, the National Liberation Front (Front de Libération Nationale-FLN) launched attacks throughout Algeria in the opening salvo of a war of independence. An important watershed in this war was the massacre of civilians by the FLN near the town of Philippeville in August 1955. The government claimed it killed 1,273 guerrillas in retaliation according to the FLN, 12,000 Muslims perished in an orgy of bloodletting by the armed forces and police, as well as colon gangs. After Philippeville, all-out war began in Algeria.

From its origins in 1954 as ragtag maquisards [resistance fighters] numbering in the hundreds and armed with a motley assortment of weapons, the National Liberation Army (Armée de Libération Nationale-ALN), the military wing of the FLN, had evolved by 1957 into a disciplined fighting force of nearly 40,000 that successfully applied hit-and-run guerrilla warfare tactics. By 1956 France had committed more than 400,000 troops to Algeria. In 1958-59 the French army had won military control in Algeria, but political developments had already overtaken the French army's successes. During that period in France, opposition to the conflict was growing, and international pressure was also building on France to grant Algeria independence.

When Charles De Gaulle became premier of France in June 1958, he was given carte blanche to deal with Algeria. De Gaulle appointed a committee to draft a new constitution for France's Fifth Republic, with which Algeria would be associated but of which it would not form an integral part. Muslims, including women, were registered for the first time with Europeans on a common electoral roll to participate in a referendum to be held on the new constitution in September 1958. Despite threats of reprisal by the FLN, 80 percent of the Muslim electorate turned out to vote in September, and 96 percent of them approved the constitution. In February 1959, de Gaulle was elected president of the new Fifth Republic.

Then, in a September 1959 statement, de Gaulle uttered the words "self-determination," which he envisioned as leading to majority rule in an Algeria formally associated with France. Claiming that de Gaulle had betrayed them, the colons, backed by units of the army, staged an insurrection in Algiers in January 1960 that won mass support in Europe. French forces defused the insurrection. However, in April 1961 important elements of the French army joined in another unsuccessful insurrection intended to seize control of Algeria as well as topple the de Gaulle regime. This coup marked the turning point in the official attitude toward the Algerian war. De Gaulle was now prepared to abandon the colons, the group that no previous French government could have written off. Talks with the FLN reopened at Evian in May 1961. In their final form, the Evian Accords allowed the colons equal legal protection with Algerians over a three-year period. At the end of that period, however, Europeans would be obliged to become Algerian citizens or be classified as aliens with the attendant loss of rights. The French electorate approved the Evian Accords by an overwhelming 91 percent vote in a referendum held in June 1962. On July 1, 1962, some 6 million of a total Algerian electorate of 6.5 million cast their ballots in the referendum on independence. The affirmative vote was a nearly unanimous mandate.

Independent Algeria, 1962-Present:

Ahmed Ben Bella
Algerian statesman prime minister 1962–63 president 1963–65. He was the first president of an independent Algeria, overthrown in a military coup.
The creation of the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria was formally proclaimed on September 25, 1962. The following day, after being named premier, Ahmed Ben Bella formed a cabinet that linked the leadership of the three power bases-the army, the party, and the government. However, Ben Bella's ambitions and authoritarian tendencies ultimately led the triumvirate to unravel and provoked increasing discontent among Algerians.

The war of national liberation and its aftermath had severely disrupted Algeria's society and economy. In addition to the physical destruction, the exodus of the colons deprived the country of most of its managers, civil servants, engineers, teachers, physicians, and skilled workers. The homeless and displaced numbered in the hundreds of thousands, many suffering from illness, and some 70 percent of the work force was unemployed. The months immediately following independence had witnessed the pell-mell rush of Algerians, their government, and its officials to claim the property and jobs left behind by the Europeans. In the 1963 March Decrees, Ben Bella declared that all agricultural, industrial, and commercial properties previously owned and operated by Europeans were vacant, thereby legalizing confiscation by the state.

A new constitution drawn up under close FLN supervision was approved by nationwide referendum in September 1963, and Ben Bella was confirmed as the party's choice to lead the country for a five-year term. Under the new constitution, Ben Bella as president combined the functions of chief of state and head of government with those of supreme commander of the armed forces. He formed his government with no need for legislative approval and was solely responsible for the definition and direction of its policies. Essentially, he had no effective institutional check on his powers.

Houari Boumediène
served as Algeria's Chairman of the Revolutionary Council from 19 June 1965 until 12 December 1976, and from then on as President of Algeria to his death on 27 December 1978.
Opposition leader Hosine Ait-Ahmed quit the National Assembly in 1963 to protest the increasingly dictatorial tendencies of the regime and formed a clandestine resistance movement, the Front of Socialist Forces (Front des Forces Socialistes-FFS) dedicated to overthrowing the Ben Bella regime by force. Late summer 1963 saw sporadic incidents attributed to the FFS. More serious fighting broke out a year later. The army moved quickly and in force to crush the rebellion. As minister of defense, Houari Boumediene had no qualms about sending the army to put down regional uprisings because he felt they posed a threat to the state. However, when Ben Bella attempted to co-opt allies from among some of those regionalists, tensions increased between Boumediene and Ben Bella. On June 19, 1965, Boumediene deposed Ben Bella in a military coup d'état that was both swift and bloodless.

Boumediene immediately dissolved the National Assembly and suspended the 1963 constitution. Political power resided in the Council of the Revolution, a predominantly military body intended to foster cooperation among various factions in the army and the party. Boumediene's position as head of government and head of state was not secure initially, but following attempted coups and a failed assassination attempt in 1967-68, Boumediene succeeded in consolidating power. Eleven years after he took power and after much public debate, a long-promised new constitution was promulgated in November 1976, and Boumediene was elected president with a 95 percent majority.

Boumediene's death on December 27, 1978, set off a struggle within the FLN to choose a successor. As a compromise to break a deadlock between two other candidates, Colonel Chadli Bendjedid, a moderate who had collaborated with Boumediene in deposing Ben Bella, was sworn in on February 9, 1979 (and subsequently reelected in 1984 and 1988). In June 1980, he summoned an extraordinary FLN Party Congress to produce a five-year plan to liberalize the economy and break up unwieldy state corporations. However, reform efforts failed to end high unemployment and other economic hardships, all of which fueled Islamist activism. The alienation and anger of the population were fanned by the widespread perception that the government had become corrupt and aloof. The waves of discontent crested in October 1988, when a series of strikes and walkouts by students and workers in Algiers degenerated into rioting. In response, the government declared a state of emergency and used force to quell the unrest.
The stringent measures used to put down the riots of “Black October” engendered a groundswell of outrage. In response, Benjedid conducted a house cleaning of senior officials and drew up a program of political reform. A new constitution, approved overwhelmingly in February 1989, dropped the word socialist from the official description of the country guaranteed freedoms of expression, association, and meeting but withdrew the guarantees of women's rights that had appeared in the 1976 constitution. The FLN was not mentioned in the document at all, and the army was discussed only in the context of national defense. The new laws reinvigorated politics. Newspapers became the liveliest and freest in the Arab world, while political parties of nearly every stripe vied for members and a voice. In February 1989, the Islamic Salvation Front (Front Islamique du Salut-FIS) was founded.

Algeria's leaders were stunned in December 1991 when FIS candidates won absolute majorities in 188 of 430 electoral districts, far ahead of the FLN's 15 seats, in the first round of legislative elections. Faced with the possibility of a complete FIS takeover and under pressure from the military leadership, Benjadid dissolved parliament and then resigned in January 1992. He was succeeded by the five-member High Council of State, which canceled the second round of elections. The FIS, as well as the FLN, clamored for a return of the electoral process, but police and troops countered with massive arrests. In February 1992, violent demonstrations erupted in many cities. The government declared a one-year state of emergency and banned the FIS. The voiding of the 1991 election results led to a period of civil conflict that cost the lives of as many as 150,000 people. Periodic negotiations between the military government and Islamist rebels failed to produce a settlement.


Albanians in the United States are primarily Orthodox Christians, Roman Catholics, or Muslims. Currently, the Albanian Orthodox Church in the United States is divided into two ecclesiastical jurisdictions. The Albanian Orthodox Archdiocese in America (OCA) is an autocephalous church established in 1908 by Fan S. Noli, a major religious and political figure in the Albanian community. With a membership of around 45,000, it currently has 16 parishes nationwide. The current Primate is Metropolitan Theodosius. The headquarters of the Archdiocese, St. George Albanian Orthodox Cathedral,

Albanian Roman Catholics began coming to the United States in the 1960s and 1970s. At present, three Albanian Catholic churches exist in the United States: Church of Our Lady of Shkodra, located in the Bronx, New York City, founded in 1969 and has a membership of 1,350 St. Paul Catholic Church, located in Warren, Michigan and Our Lady of the Albanians, located in Beverly Hills, Michigan.

Albanian Muslims came to the United States around 1913. Currently, there are between 25,000 and 30,000 Albanian Muslims in the United States, primarily of the Sunni division within Islam. The Presidency of Albanian Muslim Community Centers in the United States and Canada was founded in 1992 by Imam Vehbi Ismail (1919– ) in an attempt to provide unity for Muslims of Albanian heritage. The Presidency comprises 13 community centers or mosques located in Connecticut, Philadelphia, Toronto, New York, New Jersey, Florida, and Michigan. Albanian Americans of all faiths are welcome at these centers (for more information on Albanian Muslims, contact Imam Vehbi Ismail, Albanian Islamic Center, 20426 Country Club Road, Harper Woods, Michigan 48236).

A small sect of Muslims of the Bektaski Order, the First Albanian Teke Bektashiane in America, is located in Taylor, Michigan. The Order was founded in 1954. They have a small library and publish The Voice of Bektashism.

A Crisis of Overproduction

In Greek mythology there was a character called Procrustes who had a nasty habit of cutting off the legs, head and arms of his guests to make them fit into his infamous bed. Nowadays the capitalist system resembles the bed of Procrustes. The bourgeoisie is systematically destroying the means of production in order to make them fit into the narrow limits of the capitalist system. This economic vandalism resembles a policy of slash and burn on a vast scale.

George Soros likens it to the kind of smashing ball used to demolish tall buildings. But it is not only buildings that are being destroyed but whole economies and states. The slogan of the hour is austerity, cuts and falling living standards. In every country the bourgeoisie raises the same war cry: “We must cut public expenditure!” Every government in the capitalist world, whether right or “left” is in reality pursuing the same policy. This is not the result of the whims of individual politicians, of ignorance or bad faith (although there is plenty of this also) but a graphic expression of the blind alley in which the capitalist system finds itself.

This is an expression of the fact that the capitalist system is reaching its limits and is unable to develop the productive forces as it did in the past. Like Goethe’s Sorcerer’s Apprentice, it has conjured up forces it cannot control. But by slashing state expenditure, they are simultaneously reducing demand and cutting the whole market, just at a time when even the bourgeois economists admit that there is a serious problem of overproduction (“overcapacity”) on a world scale. Let us take just one example, the automobile sector. This is fundamental because it also involves many other sectors, such as steel, plastic, chemicals and electronics.

The global excess capacity of the automobile industry is approximately thirty percent. This means that Ford, General Motors, Fiat, Renault, Toyota and all the others could close one third of their factories and lay off one third of their workers tomorrow, and they would still not be able to sell all the vehicles they produce at what they consider to be an acceptable rate of profit. A similar position exists in many other sectors. Unless and until this problem of excess capacity is resolved, there can be no real end to the present crisis.

The dilemma of the capitalists can be easily expressed. If Europe and the USA are not consuming, China cannot produce. If China is not producing at the same pace as before, countries like Brazil. Argentina and Australia cannot continue to export their raw materials. The whole world is inseparably interlinked. The crisis of the euro will affect the US economy, which is in a very fragile state, and what happens in the USA will have a decisive effect on the entire world economy. Thus, globalisation manifests itself as a global crisis of capitalism.

Important Events From This day in History October 29th

1942 : The push against Rommel forces by the 8th Army in North Africa continues to gain ground as heavy losses are inflicted on Rommels Tank's by the British army and American Fighter Pilots are pounding the supply lines to stop the enemy from getting much needed reinforcements.

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1964 : The Star of India (563.35 carat (112.67 g) star sapphire) and the Eagle Diamond (16.25 carat discovered in Eagle, Wisconsin) are stolen from the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. The Star of India is later recovered but the Eagle Diamond is never found.

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1975 : Following a long term illness Franco resigns as head of state after ruling the country for 36 years, Prince Juan Carlos will become the first King of Spain for 44 years since the Spanish Civil War.

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1983 : The largest mass demonstration in Dutch history when 500,000 people demonstrate against against the deployment of cruise missiles on Netherlands soil.

Historical development

The field of international relations emerged at the beginning of the 20th century largely in the West and in particular in the United States as that country grew in power and influence. Whereas the study of international relations in the newly founded Soviet Union and later in communist China was stultified by officially imposed Marxist ideology, in the West the field flourished as the result of a number of factors: a growing demand to find less-dangerous and more-effective means of conducting relations between peoples, societies, governments, and economies a surge of writing and research inspired by the belief that systematic observation and inquiry could dispel ignorance and serve human betterment and the popularization of political affairs, including foreign affairs. The traditional view that foreign and military matters should remain the exclusive preserve of rulers and other elites yielded to the belief that such matters constituted an important concern and responsibility of all citizens. This increasing popularization of international relations reinforced the idea that general education should include instruction in foreign affairs and that knowledge should be advanced in the interests of greater public control and oversight of foreign and military policy.

This new perspective was articulated by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson (1913–21) in his program for relations between the Great Powers following a settlement of World War I. The first of his Fourteen Points, as his program came to be known, was a call for “open covenants of peace, openly arrived at” in place of the secret treaties that were believed to have contributed to the outbreak of the war. The extreme devastation caused by the war strengthened the conviction among political leaders that not enough was known about international relations and that universities should promote research and teaching on issues related to international cooperation and war and peace.

International relations scholarship prior to World War I was conducted primarily in two loosely organized branches of learning: diplomatic history and international law. Involving meticulous archival and other primary-source research, diplomatic history emphasized the uniqueness of international events and the methods of diplomacy as it was actually conducted. International law—especially the law of war—had a long history in international relations and was viewed as the source of fundamental normative standards of international conduct. The emergence of international relations was to broaden the scope of international law beyond this traditional focal point.

Israel International Relations: Israel - UAE Relations

Up until the signing of the Abraham Accords signed on August 13, 2020, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) did not officially recognize Israel, and Israeli passport-holders could not legally enter the country.

Relations became strained in 2010 after the UAE accused the Mossad of assassinating Mahmoud al-Mabhouh. He was the co-founder of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, and wanted by the Israeli government for the kidnapping and murder of two Israeli soldiers in 1989 and purchasing arms from Iran for use in Gaza.

In late November 2015, the government of the United Arab Emirates granted Israel formal permission to establish a diplomatic office in Abu Dhabi. Although this signifies a slight warming in relations between the two countries, the UAE granted permission to Israel largely to facilitate its membership in the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). Officials from both countries have clarified that the diplomatic office serves the sole purpose of allowing Israeli diplomats to have a permanent office for IRENA and reside there as well. This diplomatic relationship is comparable to the relationship between Iran and the United States, wherein Iran has a UN Mission in New York despite the lack of U.S.-Iranian diplomatic relations.

During the first week of November 2016, Israel&rsquos ambassador to the United Nations, Danny Danon, paid a secretive visit to the UAE to attend a conference under the auspices of his position as chairman of the UN legal committee. Danon&rsquos visit was conducted under stringent security measures, to avoid public opposition.

Some Israeli businesses conduct business in the UAE, and there is a small population of Israeli ex-patriot professionals working in the UAE. There are also citizens of Israel who hold dual citizenship and work in the UAE as citizens of other countries.

Israeli Officials Visit

In October 2018, Miri Regev, Israel&rsquos culture and sports minister paid the first state visit by an Israeli official to Abu Dhabi&rsquos Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, the Muslim world&rsquos third largest house of worship, after mosques in Mecca and Medina. During her trip to the UAE, Regev also witnessed a milestone when Israel&rsquos national anthem was played after Sagi Muki won a gold medal in the international judo tournament held in the capital. Coincidentally, an Israeli gymnastics delegation was in Qatar for the beginning of the world championships being held in Doha (Times of Israel, October 29, 2018). Shortly after Regev&rsquos visit, Israel&rsquos communications minister, Ayoub Kara, visited Dubai for a telecommunications conference (AAJ News, October 31, 2018).

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly met with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed in 2018 during a secret visit where he was accompanied by the director of the Mossad, Yossi Cohen.

Trilateral Meeting

The White House hosted a secret trilateral meeting on December 17, 2019, between Israel and the UAE on coordination against Iran as part of the Trump administration&rsquos effort to encourage normalization of relations between Israel and the Arab states. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu&rsquos national security adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat and UAE ambassador to the U.S. Yousef Al Otaiba also discussed a nonaggression pact as an interim step toward full diplomatic relations.

A few days later, UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed tweeted an article headlined: &ldquoIslam&rsquos reformation, an Arab-Israeli alliance is taking shape in the Middle East.&rdquo Netanyahu told his cabinet the following day: &ldquoThe UAE Foreign Minister, Abdullah bin Zayed, spoke about a new alliance in the Middle East: An Israeli-Arab alliance. &hellip I can only say that this remark is the result of the ripening of many contacts and efforts, which at the moment, and I emphasize at the moment, would be best served by silence.&rdquo

According to Axios, the seeds of the relationship were planted during a U.S.-led anti-Iran conference in February 2019 in Warsaw. Afterward, a trilateral forum &mdash the U.S, Israel and the UAE &ndash was created to strengthen cooperation against Iran. At least three meetings took place in 2019.

Israel announced it will take part in the 2020 World Expo in Dubai. The Israeli Foreign Ministry said it welcomed &ldquothe opportunity to share our spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship and to present Israeli innovations and trailblazing technology in various fields such as water, medicine and information technology.&rdquo

On February 23, 2020, an Israeli cycling team raced through Dubai, taking part in the UAE Tour for the first time in the latest sign of warming ties between the two countries.

Pandemic Research and Cooperation

In its first flight to Israel, Etihad Airways arrived in Israel on May 19, 2020, carrying 14 tons of medical supplies to help the Palestinians cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. The Palestinian Authority said it would refuse the aid, however, because it had come through Israel. On June 9, 2020, a second Etihad Airlines plane brought another shipment of medical supplies. Unlike the first flight, the Etihad logo and United Arab Emirates flag were visible on the plane. While the PA again complained, the supplies were to be transferred to the UN for distribution in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli officials hoped the unprecedented flights were a further step toward normalizing relations however, the possibility was clouded by Israeli plans to apply sovereignty over parts of the West Bank. Emirati Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash had warned Israel earlier that it would face &ldquodangerous repercussions&rdquo if it went through with what he referred to as annexation. Ambassador to the United States Yousef Al Otaiba subsequently took the unprecedented step of writing in Israel&rsquos most popular newspaper an article headlined, &ldquoIt&rsquos Either Annexation or Normalization,&rdquo expressing his country&rsquos opposition to Israel&rsquos plan. &ldquoAnnexation will certainly and immediately upend Israeli aspirations for improved security, economic and cultural ties with the Arab world and with U.A.E.,&rdquo he said.

Nevertheless, a few days later Netanyahu announced that Israel and the UAE agreed the Israeli and Emirati health ministries would cooperate in research and development in medical projects related to the coronavirus. Sensitive to the timing of the agreement, the UAE publicly admitted only that two private companies in the UAE had reached a deal with two Israeli companies to develop research and technology to combat COVID-19. Israel Aerospace Industries signed a cooperation agreement with the company Group 42 from Abu Dhabi on July 2, 2020, to join forces to research and development technology in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

UAE Agrees to Establish Diplomatic Relations

In a dramatic and unexpected joint announcement by the United States, Israel, and the UAE on August 13, 2020, Israel and the UAE &ldquoagreed to the full normalization of relations.&rdquo The agreement was sealed in a phone call on August 13, 2020, between President Donald Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed, crown prince of Abu Dhabi.

White House officials said the deal, to be known as the Abraham Accords, was brokered by senior adviser Jared Kushner, U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, Middle East envoy Avi Berkowitz, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and White House national security adviser Robert O&rsquoBrien.

Delegations from Israel and the UAE will meet to sign bilateral agreements regarding investment, tourism, direct flights, security, telecommunications and other issues. They will also open embassies and exchange ambassadors. Flights from Abu Dhabi to Tel Aviv are also planned to bring pilgrims to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. A few days later, the UAE cancelled the its law to boycott Israel, which had been enacted in 1972 but not enforced in recent years.

The statement also said that as &ldquoa result of this diplomatic breakthrough, and at the request of President Trump with the support of the United Arab Emirates, Israel will suspend declaring sovereignty&rdquo over areas of the West Bank.

UAE Ambassador to the United States Yousef Al Otaiba released a statement calling the agreement &ldquoa win for diplomacy and for the region&rdquo and &ldquoa significant advance in Arab-Israeli relations that lowers tensions and creates new energy for positive change.&rdquo

He added that the move &ldquoimmediately stops annexation and the potential for violent escalation. It maintains the viability of a two-state solution as endorsed by the Arab League and international community. It creates new dynamics and possibilities in the peace process.&rdquo

The UAE also reportedly secured a commitment from the administration that the United States will not recognize Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank until at least 2024. Nevertheless, Otaiba anticipated Palestinian anger when he tweeted, &ldquoThe UAE will remain a strong supporter of the Palestinian people &ndash for their dignity, their rights and their own sovereign state. They must benefit from normalization. We will forcefully advocate for these ends, now directly and bolstered with stronger incentives, policy options and diplomatic tools.&rdquo

One matter of controversy emerged after the announcement of the Abraham Accords regarding the possible sale of F-35 stealth fighters to the UAE. It was initially reported that Netanyahu acquiesced to the sale, seeing it as the price of the agreement, but he later denied such a quid pro quo.

There is a precedent for such a deal. Following the signing of the peace treaty with Egypt, Israel dropped objections to the sale of fighter planes to Egypt. This case is different, however, because the F-35 is the most advanced fighter plane in the world and, though Israel already has them, Israeli officials, members of Congress, and some analysts argued the sale would erode Israel&rsquos qualitative military edge (QME) in the region.

One of the striking aspects of this development is the lack of protests in the Arab world. The Palestinians denounced the agreement but public demonstrations were muted in the West Bank and virtually nonexistent elsewhere. The Arab League denied the Palestinian Authrority request to hold an emergency meeting to discuss the UAE-Israel agreement. Only Iran and Turkey took a stand against the Israel-UAE peace deal, and even they didn't do so for the sake of the Palestinians,&rdquo noted Prof. Eyal Zisser, &ldquobut because they see the deal as hurting their own status in the region.&rdquo

Prof. Hillel Frisch noted the significance: &ldquoRest assured that if the lack of demonstrations went largely unnoticed by the general public, it was most assuredly noticed by state leaders in the Middle East and their violent proxy organizations. For those leaders who wisely seek to establish relations with Israel, the lack of demonstrations was reassuring, as it lowered the sense of danger emanating from the Arab street regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.&rdquo

Front page of Khaleej Times of Dubai hailing UAE-Israel peace agreement

A U.S.-Israeli delegation flew on El Al to Abu Dhabi on September 1, 2020, the first-ever direct flight from Ben Gurion Airport to an Arab Gulf country. This was also the first Israeli plane allowed to fly through Saudi airspace. During the visit, U.S., Israeli and UAE officials discussed cooperation in the fields of investment, finance, health, space exploration, civil aviation, foreign policy, and tourism and culture. &ldquoThe result will be broad cooperation between two of the region&rsquos most innovative and dynamic economies,&rdquo the trio said in a statement.

Hend Al Otaiba, director of strategic communications at the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, outlined the vision of the Abraham Accords:

Just a few weeks after the announcement about the establishment of relations the UAE already had integrated a lesson about the agreement in one of the textbooks for grades 1-12. The chapter regarding the UAE-Israel agreement states that the &ldquohistoric&rdquo agreement&rdquo stems from the values of our true Islamic religion&rdquo which pushes towards creating and &ldquobuilding bridges of cooperation.&rdquo

On September 15, 2020, the Abraham Accords Peace Agreement was signed in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. by President Trump, Prime Minister Netanyahu, and UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan. As part of the Abraham Accords, the three leaders, along with the Foreign Minister of Bahrain also signed a declaration expressing their common interests. On October 15, 2020, the Knesset approved establishing formal relations with the UAE by a vote of 80-13.

Peace Dividends

In September 2020, shortly after the signing of the Abraham Accords, the Dubai Diamond Exchange and Israel Diamond Exchange agreed to share expertise, open reciprocal offices and promote regional trade in precious stones. Israel is one of the leading exporters of polished diamonds and Dubai is one of the most important diamond centers in the world.

Diplomats from the United Arab Emirates made their first official trip to Israel on October 20, 2020, and signed an agreement allowing their citizens to travel from one country to the other without visas &mdash Israel&rsquos first such waiver with an Arab state. Other agreements included approving direct flights between Tel Aviv and the Emirates, providing protections for investors, and promoting scientific and technological cooperation.

The United States, UAE and Israel also agreed to create a $3 billion investment fund, to be called the Abraham Fund, to promote private investment in Israel, the West Bank and elsewhere in the Middle East and North Africa. One of its first planned projects is construction of the long-discussed &ldquoMed-Red&rdquo oil pipeline from Eilat to Ashkelon, which would carry Emirati oil that now goes to Europe via the Suez Canal. The new route would lower energy prices and speed shipments.

The fund will also be used to improve checkpoints in the West Bank, but the Palestinians were still angered by the plan, which they see as &ldquoa stamp of approval for the Israeli occupation&rsquos continuation.&rdquo

In December 2020, Emirati authorities confirmed that the Educational Hebrew Institute, the first Hebrew language and Israeli culture institute in the UAE, will open in January.

On December 7, 2020, a member of the UAE's ruling family and Abu Dhabi businessman Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Nahyan purchased a 50 percent stake of Israeli Beitar Jerusalem, one of Israel&rsquos leading soccer clubs.

In January 2021, the UAE approved the opening of an embassy in Tel Aviv and Israel opened its embassy in Abu Dhabi.

In March 2021, the national rugby teams of Israel and the UAE held a first-ever match in Dubai.

On April 6, 2021, the first commercial passenger flight from Abu Dhabi to Israel arrived in Tel Aviv. Aboard the Etihad Airways plane was Mohamed Al Khaja, the UAE&rsquos first ambassador to Israel, Eitan Na&rsquoeh, head of mission at the Embassy of Israel in Abu Dhabi, and Tony Douglas, chief executive of Etihad Airways.

&ldquoSince the signing of the Abraham Accord between Israel and the UAE last summer, the two countries have worked together to embark upon a new and dynamic era of co-operation. From exploring trade and investment opportunities to engaging in culture and people-to-people exchanges, Israel and the UAE have moved swiftly to make the bold vision that first underpinned the accords a reality,&rdquo said Al Khaja.

In June 2021, Israel and the UAE signed an agreement to develop a water research institute in a partnership between Watergen, an Israeli water from air technology company the UAE-based company Baynunah, which specializes in food security and the Moshe Mirilashvili Institute for Applied Water Studies at Tel Aviv University.

Prof. Milette Shamir, Vice President of Tel Aviv University said, &ldquoResearch at the joint water institute will build on our special academic strengths, and will open a path for collaboration with the UAE in other mutual areas of research, as well as to student and faculty exchange programs.&rdquo

Sources: Simon Henderson, &ldquoIsrael&rsquos gulf breakthrough,&rdquo The Washington Institute, (November 30, 2015).
Daniel Roth, &ldquoReport: Israel&rsquos UN ambassador made secret visit to Dubai,&rdquo Jerusalem Post, (November 3, 2016).
Jonathan Ferziger and Alisa Odenheimer, &ldquoAs the Gulf Warms Up to Israel, a Synagogue Grows in Dubai,&rdquo Bloomberg Businessweek, (December 5, 2018).
Ami Rojkes Dombe, &ldquoIsrael to Participate in World Expo 2020 in Dubai,&rdquo IsraelDefense, (April 28, 2019).
Dave Lawler and Barak Ravid, &ldquoScoop: Israel and UAE discuss anti-Iran cooperation at secret White House meeting,&rdquo Axios, (February 4, 2020).
&ldquoIsrael team races in UAE cycling tour in sporting overture,&rdquo AFP, (February 23, 2020).
Dion Nissenbaum, U.A.E. Flies Coronavirus Aid for Palestinians in First Known Commercial Flight to Israel,&rdquo Wall Street Journal, (May 19, 2020).
Felicia Schwartz, &ldquoU.A.E. Makes Rare Public Appeal to Israel: Don&rsquot Annex the West Bank,&rdquo Wall Street Journal, (June 12, 2020).
Jacob Magid, &ldquoSecond UAE plane carrying virus aid for Palestinians lands in Israel,&rdquo Times of Israel, (June 9 2020).
&ldquoUAE and Israeli companies sign deal to tackle COVID-19,&rdquo Arab News, (June 25, 2020).
Ronen Bergman and Ben Hubbard, &ldquoIsrael Announces Partnership With U.A.E., Which Throws Cold Water On It,&rdquo New York Times, (June 25, 2020).
&ldquoIsraeli and Emirati firms sign &lsquohistoric agreement&rsquo to jointly combat COVID-19,&rdquo Times of Israel, (July 3, 2020).
The White House, (August 13, 2020).
Noa Landau, &ldquoIsrael Suspends West Bank Annexation in Deal to Normalize Relations With the UAE,&rdquo Haaretz, (August 13, 2020).
Steve Hendrix and Kareem Fahim, &ldquoIsrael-UAE deal condemned by Palestinians, cheered by Egypt and Bahrain,&rdquo Washington Post, (August 13, 2020).
Marcy Oster, &ldquoUAE cancels Israel boycott law as El Al prepares first direct flight and Kushner promises more deals,&rdquo JTA, (August 30, 2020).
&ldquoEl Al plane, ending landmark UAE trip, again flies over Saudi, lands in Tel Aviv,&rdquo Times of Israel, (September 1, 2020).
Yossi Yehoshua, &ldquoNetanyahu secretly visited UAE in 2018 to kick start peace deal,&rdquo Ynet, (September 1, 2020).
Hillel Frisch, &ldquoThe Israel-UAE Agreement&rsquos Greatest Achievement: Little Arab Protest,&rdquo BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 1,729, (September 3, 2020).
Eyal Zisser, &ldquoThe Palestinians have been left on their own,&rdquo Israel Hayom, (September 3, 2020).
&ldquoDespite Public Denial, Netanyahu Privately Let U.S. Sell F-35 to UAE, Report Says,&rdquo Haaretz, (September 4, 2020).
Jacob Magid, &ldquoUS assured UAE it won&rsquot back Israel annexation before 2024 at earliest, ToI told,&rdquo Times of Israel, (September 13, 2020).
Hend Al Otaiba, &ldquoUAE: We Seek a Warm Peace With Israel,&rdquo Haaretz, (September 14, 2020).
Zachary Keyser, &ldquoUAE begins teaching about normalization with Israel to grades 1-12,&rdquo Jerusalem Post, (September 15, 2020).
&ldquoIsrael, Dubai diamond exchanges begin strategic collaboration,&rdquo Reuters, (September 17, 2020).
David M. Halbfinger and Adam Rasgon, &ldquoEmiratis Land in Israel, Firming New Ties and Angering Palestinians,&rdquo New York Times, (October 20, 2020).
Abigail Klein Leichman, &ldquoHebrew language and Israeli culture institute opens in UAE,&rdquo Israel21c, (November 29, 2020).
&ldquoEmirati royal buys 50 percent stake in Israel&rsquo Beitar Jerusalem Football Club,&rdquo The New Arab, (December 7, 2020).
Lahav Harkov, &ldquoIsrael reopens mission to Morocco after 20 years,&rdquo Jerusalem Post, (January 26, 2021).
&ldquoIsrael and UAE face off in rugby in what&rsquos likely the first-ever friendly sports matchup between the 2 countries,&rdquo JTA, (March 19, 2021).
Nilanjana Gupta and Hayley Skirka, Etihad takes off for Israel: UAE airline launches inaugural flight to Tel Aviv,&rdquo The National, (April 6, 2021).
&ldquoIsrael-UAE water research institute to open in Abu Dhabi,&rdquo Jerusalem Post, (June 1, 2021).

Photos: Twitter feed of Yiftah Curiel in Frisch. Peace agreement photo: Chris Kleponis / CNP

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