The following is excerpted from President Carter's address to the Israeli Knesset on Monday :

... I'm honored to stand in this assembly of free men and women, which represents a great and ancient people, a young and courageous nation. I bring with me the best wishes and the greetings of the people of the United States of America, who share with the people of Israel the love of liverty, of justice and of peace. And I'm honored to be in Jerusalem, this holy city, described by Isaiah as a quiet habitation, in which for so many of the human race the cause of brotherhood and peace are enshrined. I am here in the cause of brotherhood and of peace....

No people desire or deserve peace more than the Jewish people. None have wanted it so long, none have spoken of it more eloquently, none have suffered so much from the absence of peace. Pogrom after pogrom, war after war, Israel has buried its sons and its daughters. Yesterday morning at Yad Vashem I grieved in the presence of terrible reminders of the agony and the horror of the Holocaust.

Modern Israel came into being in the wake of that historic crime, the enormity of which is almost beyond human comprehension. I know that Israel is committed and determined above all that nothing like it must ever, ever be permitted to happen again on earth. Americans respect that determination, and we fully share that determination with you. And Americans recognize that for Jews over the centuries, as with Israel since its independence, caution and wariness have been a practical and a moral necessity for survival.

And yet in these past months you've made enormous sacrifices and you've taken great risks for peace. This sacred dedication to peace, born and fostered in Jerusalem and in Cairo, has given to men and women everywhere renewed sense of hope that human reason, good will and faith can succeed and can break down barriers between peoples who in our lifetimes have only known war....

But we have not yet fully met our challenge. Despite our unflagging determination, despite the extraordinary progress of the past six months, we still fall short.

It's now the somber responsibility of us all to exert our energies and our imaginations once again to contemplate the tragedy of failure and the legitimate exultation -- if we bring peace. In this effort the support of the members of the Knesset will obviously be crucial. Our vision must be as great as our goal. Wisdom and courage are required of us all, and so too are practicality and realism. We must not lose this moment. We must pray as if everything depended on God, and we must act as if everything depends on ourselves.

What kind of peace do we seek? Spinoza said that peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, for confidence, for justice. Americans share that vision and will stand beside Israel to be sure that vision is fulfilled....

My friends, from my own experience as president of the United States I understand all too well that historic decisions are seldom easy, seldom without pain. Benjamin Franklin, who negotiated the treaty of peace between England and America after our own war of independence, once said that he had never seen a peace made, even the most advantageous, that was not censured as inadequate. Throughout the peace process, both Israel and Egypt have understood that no treaty can embody every aim of both nations. What a treaty can do, what it can do far better than the fragile status quo, and infinitely better than the insidious tensions that will build if our efforts are further stalled, or fail, is to protect the vital interests of both Israel and Egypt and open up the possibility of peace for all the states and all the peoples of this troubled region.

Doubts are the stuff of great decisions, but so are dreams. We're now at the very verge of turning Israel's eternal dream of peace into reality. I would not pretend that this reality will be free from further challenges. It will not. And better than most, the Jewish people know that life is seldom easy. But we must make this beginning, we must seize this precious opportunity....

At Camp David, Prime Minister begin and President Sadat forged two frameworks for the building of that comprehensive peace. The genius of that accomplishment is that negotiations under the frameworks can go forward independently of each other without destroying the obvious relationship between them. They are designed to be mutually reinforcing, with the intrinsic flexibility necessary to promote the comprehensive peace that we all desire. Both will be fulfilled only when others of your Arab neighbors follow the visionary example of President Sadat, when they put ancient animosities behind them and agree to negotiate, as you desire, as you have already done with President Sadat, an honorable solution to the differences between you....

Israel's security will rest not only on how the negotiations affect the situation on your own borders, but also on how it affects the forces of stability and moderation beyond your borders. I am convinced that nothing can do more to create a hospitable atmosphere for those more distant forces in the long run than an equitable peace treaty between Isreael and Egypt.

The risks of peace between you and your Egyptian neighbors are real. But America is ready to reduce any risks and to balance them within the bounds of our strength and our influence.

I came to Israel representing the most powerful country on earth. And I can assure you that the United States intends to use that power in the pursuit of a stable and a peaceful Middle East. We have been centrally involved in this region, and we will stay involved politically, economically and militarily. We will stand by our friends. We are ready to place our strength at Israel's side when you want it to ensure Israel's security and well-being....

In the context of peace, we are prepared to see Israel's economic and military relationship with the United States taking on new and strong and more meaningful dimensions even than already exist. We will work not only to attain peace but to maintain peace, recognizing that it is a permanent challenge of our times. We will rededicate ourselves to the ideals that our people share. These ideals are the sources not only of our strength, but of our self-respect as nations, as leaders and as individuals.... CAPTION:

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