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Menachem Begin signed this typed letter on his personalized stationery to an American citizen in 1987, saying that he couldn't criticize the United States' actions against Iran in the Persian Gulf because he was an Israeli citizen.
Typed letter signed "M. Begin" in blue ink. 1 page, 6½x8¼, on Begin's personalized stationery. Sept. 8, 1987. Addressed to Mr. Gary Lorenz, Madison, Wisconsin. In full: "Dear Mr. Lorenz, Thank you for your letter dated August 12th., which reached me today. As a citizen of Israel I must not criticize decisions taken by the U.S. Government. It is your privilege, as a U.S. citizen, to do so. And let us all hope that peace will also reign in the Persian Gulf. With my best wishes, Sincerely, M. Begin." Begin wrote this letter during a period of increased saber-rattling between Iran and the United States in the Persian Gulf, which included reflagging oil tankers in the Persian Gulf with American flags beginning in March and an Iranian missile attack on the USS Stark, which killed 37 American sailors. It was dated three days before the U. S. Navy captured an Iranian ship laying mines and about a month before the U. S. destroyed an Iranian oil platform. Begin (1913-1992, born in Brest-Litovsk, Russia, now Belarus) reached British Palestine in 1943 to participate in the struggle for an independent state of Israel. He served in the Knesset from its first session. In 1973, the Likud Party was formed and Begin became its leader. When Likud won the elections in 1977, he became Prime Minister. Begin and Egyptian President Anwar el-Sadat received the Nobel Peace Prize for the peace treaty they signed in 1978, after much of the Sinai was returned to Egypt. In June 1981, Begin asked the Cabinet to approve the bombing of the Iraqi nuclear reactor at Osirak. On Shavuot, Israeli planes flew below radar detection through Arab air space and destroyed the facility, which Israel later claimed had been primed for a start-up. In 1982, Begin authorized the Israeli invasion of Lebanon. In failing health and following the death of his wife, Aliza, Begin stepped down in September 1983. Lightly toned and creased. Folded once and unfolded. Otherwise in fine condition.

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Born: August 16, 1913 in Brest, Russian Empire (now Belarus)
Died: March 8, 1992 in Tel Aviv, Israel

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