The Six Day War; the prelude: מלחמת ששת הימים



June 1967

Ps. 120:7, “I am for peace, but when I speak, they are for war.”

Ps. 27: 3, “Though a host encamp against me, my heart will not fear. though wars rise against me, in spite of that, I will be confident.”

The Antagonists

The Nation of Israel, formed in 1948 on one side, on the other:

Egypt, Jordan, Syria; the Arab Exeditionary Forces, made up of soldiers from Iraq, Tunisia, Algeria, Morroco, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, PLO.

Troop strength

Israel: 1oo,ooo deployed, 300 combat aircraft, 800 tanks.

Egypt, Syria, Jordan: 240,000 deployed, 957 combat aircraft, 2,504 tanks.


Israel: 770-983 killed, 15 captured, 43 aircraft destroyed.

Egypt, Jordan, Syria; total; 13,200-23,500 killed, 5,500 captured, 452 aircraft destroyed.

Prelude to War

Despite repeated calls for negotiations by Golda Mier to meet with David Ben-Gurion, Nasser rebuffs the extended offers with a repeated refusal to recognize the existence of Israel. In a speech to the United Arab Republic National Assembly in May of 1967, he said,

 “The danger of Israel lies in the very existence of Israel…”

On May 16, Nasser forced the withdrawal of the UN security force that had been placed in the Sinai since the 1956 war. The Voice of the Arab radio broadcast on May 18,

“As of today there no longer exists an international force to protect Israel. We shall exercise patience no more… The sole method we shall apply against Israel is total war, which will result in the total extermination of it’s Zionist existence.”

From the Golan Heights in Syria, rockets were continually being rained down on farms and towns in Israel and Assad announced,

“Our forces are now ready to initiate the act of liberation…the time has come to enter into a battle of annihilation.”

May 22, 1967, Egypt blocks the Straits of Tiran, denying Israel access to both Asia and its oil supply. Israel had warned Egypt that to block the straits would be considered an act of war and President Johnson had concurred that Israel had rights of access to the straits that could not be denied. (never the less, Johnson refused to back Israel in any way, even placing an arms embargo against her)

Nasser daily challenged Israel to war,

“The Jews threaten war. I reply, “Welcome”. We are ready for war.”

“Our basic objective will be the destruction of Israel. The Arab people want to fight.”

On May 30, the king of Jordan signed a defense pact with Egypt. Nasser states,

“The armies of Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon are poised on the borders of Israel. Behind us are the armies of Iraq, Algeria, Kuwait, Sudan and the whole Arab Nation.”

President Abdur Aref of Iraq said,

“The existence of Israel is an error which must be rectified…Our goal is clear, to wipe Israel off the map”

Not to be left out, the newly formed PLO, laid out in its foundational charter the mandate calling for the destruction of Israel, and began to cross into Israel to commit increasing acts of terror against the Israeli people. Truly the entire Arab world, with help from others also, was setting the table for Israels total destruction.

To be continued


About notmanynoble

woodcutter from Washington State
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