Muhammad Anwar el-Sadat was an Egyptian politician and military officer who served as the third president of Egypt, from 15 October 1970 until his assassination by fundamentalist army officers on 6 October 1981.
37 Facts About Anwar Sadat
Anwar Sadat was born on 25 December 1918 in Mit Abu El Kom, part of Monufia Governorate in what was then the Sultanate of Egypt, to a poor family, one of 13 brothers and sisters.
One of his brothers, Atef Anwar Sadat, later became a pilot and was killed in action during the October War of 1973.
Anwar Sadat's father, Anwar Mohammed El Sadat, was an Upper Egyptian, and his mother, Sit Al-Berain, was born to an Egyptian mother and a Sudanese father.
Anwar Sadat graduated from the Royal Military Academy in Cairo, the capital of what was then the Kingdom of Egypt, in 1938 and was appointed to the Signal Corps.
Anwar Sadat entered the army as a second lieutenant and was posted to the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan.
Anwar Sadat was active in many political movements, including the Muslim Brotherhood, the fascist Young Egypt, the pro-palace Iron Guard of Egypt, and the secret military group called the Free Officers.
Anwar Sadat was assigned to announce the news of the revolution to the Egyptian people over the radio networks.
Anwar Sadat was appointed editor of the newly founded daily Al Gomhuria.
Anwar Sadat was the President of the National Assembly and then vice president and member of the presidential council in 1964.
Anwar Sadat was reappointed as vice president again in December 1969.
Some major events of Anwar Sadat's presidency were his "Corrective Revolution" to consolidate power, the break with Egypt's long-time ally and aid-giver the USSR, the 1973 October War with Israel, the Camp David peace treaty with Israel, the "opening up" of Egypt's economy, and lastly his assassination in 1981.
Anwar Sadat succeeded Nasser as president after the latter's death in October 1970.
On 15 May 1971, Anwar Sadat announced his Corrective Revolution, purging the government, political and security establishments of the most ardent Nasserists.
Anwar Sadat encouraged the emergence of an Islamist movement, which had been suppressed by Nasser.
In 1971, three years into the War of Attrition in the Suez Canal zone, Anwar Sadat endorsed in a letter the peace proposals of UN negotiator Gunnar Jarring, which seemed to lead to a full peace with Israel on the basis of Israel's withdrawal to its pre-war borders.
Shortly after taking office, Anwar Sadat shocked many Egyptians by dismissing and imprisoning two of the most powerful figures in the regime, Vice President Ali Sabri, who had close ties with Soviet officials, and Sharawy Gomaa, the Interior Minister, who controlled the secret police.
Anwar Sadat's rising popularity would accelerate after he cut back the powers of the hated secret police, expelled Soviet military from the country and reformed the Egyptian army for a renewed confrontation with Israel.
On 6 October 1973, in conjunction with Hafez al-Assad of Syria, Anwar Sadat launched the October War, known as the Yom Kippur War, a surprise attack against the Israeli forces occupying the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula, and the Syrian Golan Heights in an attempt to retake these respective Egyptian and Syrian territories that had been occupied by Israel since the Six Day War six years earlier.
The initial Egyptian and Syrian victories in the war restored popular morale throughout Egypt and the Arab World and, for many years after, Anwar Sadat was known as the "Hero of the Crossing".
Not wanting either Syria or the Soviet Union to influence the peace process, Anwar Sadat decided to take more progressive stance towards building a comprehensive peace agreement with Israel.
The neighboring Arab countries believed that in signing the accords, Anwar Sadat had put Egypt's interests ahead of Arab unity, betraying Nasser's pan-Arabism, and destroyed the vision of a united "Arab front" for the support of the Palestinians against the "Zionist Entity".
However, Anwar Sadat decided early on that peace was the solution.
Anwar Sadat was awarded the Prince of Peace Award by Pat Robertson.
In 1971, Anwar Sadat addressed the Iranian parliament in Tehran in fluent Persian, describing the 2,500-year-old historic connection between the two lands.
Anwar Sadat was the eldest daughter of Sultan Fuad I of Egypt and Sudan and his second wife Nazli Sabri.
The last months of Anwar Sadat's presidency were marked by internal uprising.
Anwar Sadat dismissed allegations that the rioting was incited by domestic issues, believing that the Soviet Union was recruiting its regional allies in Libya and Syria to incite an uprising that would eventually force him out of power.
On 6 October 1981, Anwar Sadat was assassinated during the annual victory parade held in Cairo to celebrate Egypt's crossing of the Suez Canal.
Anwar Sadat was succeeded by his vice president Hosni Mubarak, whose hand was injured during the attack.
Anwar Sadat's funeral was attended by a record number of dignitaries from around the world, including a rare simultaneous attendance by three former US presidents: Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon.
Anwar Sadat was buried in the unknown soldier memorial in Cairo, across the street from the stand where he was assassinated.
In 1983, Sadat, a miniseries based on the life of Anwar Sadat, aired on US television with Oscar-winning actor Louis Gossett Jr.
Anwar Sadat was portrayed by Robert Loggia in the 1982 television movie A Woman Called Golda, opposite Ingrid Bergman as Golda Meir.
The first Egyptian depiction of Anwar Sadat's life came in 2001, when Ayyam El Anwar Sadat was released in Egyptian cinemas.
The young Anwar Sadat is a major character in Ken Follett's thriller The Key to Rebecca, taking place in World War II Cairo.
Anwar Sadat was a recurring character on Saturday Night Live, played by Garrett Morris, who bore a resemblance to Anwar Sadat.