In the heart of the battle: Abraham Rabinovich’s book on the Six Day War

By CHUCK FREILICH
October 4, 2017 16:29

The book’s title, The Battle for Jerusalem: An Unintended Conquest already hints at part of the problem.




THE AUTHOR, Abraham Rabinovich, poses for a photo with IDF soldiers atop the Temple Mount in June 19

MOSHE GOLDENHIRSCH THE AUTHOR, Abraham Rabinovich, poses for a photo with IDF soldiers atop the Temple Mount in June 1967 shortly after the war’s end.a circus and then goes undercover in Nazi Berlin, as the Iranian mentalist Zabbatini.. (photo credit:Courtesy)

 

It is June 1967. Israel is a fledgling 19-year-old state, haunted by the Holocaust, surrounded by Arab states calling for its destruction, their armies mobilized and ready. Yitzhak Rabin, then the IDF chief of staff, fears that 10,000 people may be killed in a war, while then-defense minister Moshe Dayan imagines that figure will be tens of thousands. The public fears genocide.


Instead, the Six Day War ended in a dramatic victory, with Israel now in control of territory three times its size and the strategic depth it had so desperately lacked. Extinction ceased to be an imminent threat and Israel and the entire Jewish people let out a collective sigh of relief. Moreover, for the first time in 2,000 years, since the expulsion by the Romans, all of Jerusalem, the heart of Judaism and focal point of the Jewish saga, was in Jewish hands. The war appeared to be a case of national redemption.

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