Exactly 53 years ago tonight, the citizens of Israel were bracing for a major attack from their Arab neighbors. In the tense weeks before the Six Day War broke out, the citizens of Israel had felt that they were living on the brink of extinction.
Jerusalem had been divided by a cease-fire line from the 1948 War, and Jews had been denied access to our holiest site, the Western Wall, or “Kotel.” Israel was a tiny nation, just 9 miles wide in its narrowest point.
In the lead up to the war, Egypt had dispatched large forces into the demilitarized Sinai Peninsula and closed the Straits of Tiran, cutting off Israel’s only access to the Red Sea and cut off its oil supply. Syria had been constantly shelling Israel from the Golan Heights and attempting to divert Israel’s water sources. Starting on June 5th, Egypt, whose army was, almost at the start of the war, being decimated by the Israelis, sent “fake news reports” about their victorious plights, and deceived Jordan into entering the war.
In those six miraculous days, the Jewish people were able to return to its historical homeland and reclaim, for the first time in 2,000 years, to an undivided Jerusalem, and gain unfettered access to pray at the Western Wall, as well as to be able to return to the cave of our patriarchs and matriarchs in Hebron.
Here to talk to us about this, is Rabbi Yishai Fleisher. Rabbi Fleisher is the international spokesperson for the Jewish community of Hebron and a broadcaster with a weekly podcast on The Land of Israel Network. He is a frequent columnist for the Daily Wire and Jewish Press, and has been published in the New York Times. He has been featured on CNN, Al Jazeera, Fox, Vice, and BBC.