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SINAI CAMPAIGN In 100 hours, Israeli forces captured the Sinai desert and routed the Egyptian army. Under intense US pressure, Israel withdrew from Sinai the following year.
Following the War of Independence, the British Americans and the French, by mutual agreement, did not supply either the Israelis or the Arabs with meaningful quantities of armaments. In October, 1955, Egypt signed an arms deal with Czechoslovakia which provided Egypt with significant armaments. The arms deal, combined with continued Fedayeen raids in southern Israel, convinced Israeli leaders that steps would have to be taken to alleviate the situation, before Egyptian forces were able to achieve strategic dominance. On July 26, 1956, President Nasser of Egypt, nationalized the Suez Canal. Therefore, the British and French -- who had already been selling Israel advanced weapons -- were provided with a motive for cooperating with Israel's attack on Nasser.

On October 29, 1956, Israeli forces attacked Egyptian forces in the Sinai. Israel rapidly defeated the Egyptian forces, losing just 180 men, inflicting over 1,000 fatalities, and capturing over 6,000 Egyptian prisoners of war. The Israeli forces halted 10 miles short of the canal, allowing the British and French troops to intervene to protect the waterway. Sustained American pressure forced Israel to withdraw from the Sinai and Gaza Strip. In return, the Straits of Tiran were opened for Israeli shipping, and a UN force was placed in the Sinai and Gaza Strip as a buffer force.