8:30 am – Carter meets with the US team.
Lesson 1: When things are not working, stall.
A tried and true tactic every negotiator needs to learn, stalling can be a useful tool; sometimes it is the only viable option.
Some days the stars are simply not aligned.
Carter’s facilitative approach has flopped. He needs to shift gears. But how?
He does not have the luxury to stall for long. These are three large teams who need to be fed and entertained, people with important things to do. Carter needs to find a rabbit in his hat and fast.
Lesson 2: When what you are doing isn’t working, try something different; otherwise, you will become a living example of the definition of insanity.
Carter decides that Begin is the problem and decides to lean on him.
In the process of leaning, perhaps desperate to salvage the negotiations, Carter leaks that Sadat is willing to make concessions.
Begin leaks back, stating that he would not “personally recommend” removal of settlements in the Sinai, implying that it could be done without his personal recommendation.
Lesson 3: If you want the other party to make concessions, sometimes you have to go first.
Despite what appears to be at least a baby step in the right direction, Carter tells Begin that the US is going to make its own proposal.
Suddenly, the elephant in the room begins to move around.
This is no longer a two-way negotiation between Egypt and Israel.
Carter clearly prefers Sadat for many reasons. The two men meet, and Carter suggests that the US and Egypt could reach an agreement without Israel’s joinder. Does this not unnecessarily empower Egypt?
As a result of these conferences, Sadat likes the idea of a US proposal; Begin does not.
Begin, of course, has more to lose.
Carter begins to understand that he has leverage because both parties want US approval.
Carter and his wife end the day by having Shabbat dinner with Begin and his wife.