Excavations underway to find secret trenches from Six Day War in Jerusalem

The dig began after IDF soldiers reached out to the Ammunition Hill Center for Six Day War Heritage and asked that they locate the trenches on which they fought.

 Excavations for a secret trench on Ammunition Hill in Jerusalem. (photo credit: AMMUNITION HILL)
Excavations for a secret trench on Ammunition Hill in Jerusalem.
(photo credit: AMMUNITION HILL)

After 55 years, excavations have begun on Ammunition Hill to search for a trench that might have been hidden for decades after it was last used in the Six Day War.

The dig began after dozens of IDF soldiers reached out to the Ammunition Hill Center for Six Day War Heritage and asked that it locate the trench in which they fought, according to CEO Ketri Maoz.

"More and more inquiries have come from Six Day War fighters who claimed that there is an additional eastern trench that needs to be sought out and found."

Ammunition Hill Center CEO, Ketri Maoz.

Ammunition Hill was one of the key battles in Jerusalem during the 1967 war. Thirty-six Israeli soldiers died while capturing the Jordanian military post at the site.

The trench in question supposedly continues eastward and was used by Jordanian soldiers to watch Mount Scopus. Over the past few decades, however, it has become filled and covered with dirt.

 Excavations of a secret trench on Ammunition Hill, Jerusalem.  (credit: AMMUNITION HILL) Excavations of a secret trench on Ammunition Hill, Jerusalem. (credit: AMMUNITION HILL)

“Ammunition Hill had three trenches, one that looked toward the West... another that crossed the hill widthwise, and another that looked toward Mount Scopus in the East,” Maoz explained.

The other two trenches have been the only ones available for tourists to see and visit throughout the years, he said.

Hidden treasures of history

“In recent years, more and more inquiries have come from Six Day War fighters who claimed that there is an eastern trench that needs to be sought out and found,” Maoz said.

The excavation team used aerial photos to plan their project. They will work for the next three months in the hope of finding the trench. If and when it is rediscovered, it will be made available for the public to visit.

The hope is to not only find the trench, but also perhaps discover some hidden treasures inside which might shed light on the battle.