And Then Sadat Told the Israeli Minister: 'You Have Nuclear Arms. Haven’t You Heard?'

Was the Egyptian-Syrian attack in October 1973 proof that Israeli's nuclear policy had failed? Not so, says a scholar of the period. Sadat and Assad understood Israel's capabilities, but knew that their own goals would not trigger an unconventional response

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Sadat and top military brass, October 15, 1973.
Sadat and top military brass, October 15, 1973.Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS
Dan Sagir
Dan Sagir

The Yom Kippur War was the first, and also the last, all-out war fought by Israel and the Arab countries after Israel became an undeclared Middle East nuclear state. The war, the most difficult since the War of Independence in terms of the number of losses Israel suffered, was the first test case of the impact of Israeli nuclear deterrence on the regional conflict.

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