05 September 2010

Remembering the Yom Kippur War

The Yom Kippur War was fought from October 6 to 26, 1973, between Israel and a massive coalition of Arab states backing Egypt and Syria.  The war began with a joint surprise attack on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in Judaism.  The obvious reason for choosing the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur to stage a surprise attack on Israel was that on this specific holiday (unlike any other) the country comes to a complete standstill. Yom Kippur is the holiest day in the Jewish calendar; both religiously observant Jews and most of the secular majority fast, abstain from any use of electricity, engines, communications, etc., and all road traffic ceases. Many soldiers also went home from military facilities for the holiday, and Israel was more vulnerable with much of its military on leave.

Due to a massive blunder on the part of Israel's intelligence apparatus there was no real prior warning and Israel's strategy of using a preemptive strike was not utilized.

Anti Israeli Propaganda from the Arab Press 
1967 arab propaganda

Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Iraq, several other Arab nations were involved in this war, providing additional weapons and financing.

Forces that attacked Israel:
Arab Expeditionary Forces:
Saudi Arabia
North Korea

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait gave financial aid and sent some token forces to join in the battle. Morocco sent three brigades to the front lines.  Pakistan sent sixteen pilots.

From 1971 to 1973, Muammar al-Qaddafi of Libya sent Mirage fighters and gave Egypt around $1 billion to arm for war. Algeria sent squadrons of fighters and bombers, armored brigades, and dozens of tanks. Tunisia sent over 1,000 soldiers, who worked with Egyptian forces in the Nile delta, and Sudan sent 3,500 soldiers.

Uganda radio reported that Idi Amin sent Ugandan soldiers to fight against Israel. Cuba also sent approximately 1,500 troops including tank and helicopter crews who reportedly also engaged in combat operations against the IDF.

Iraq also sent a force to the Golan, consisting of some 30,000 men, 500 tanks, and 700 APCs.

Egypt and Syria crossed ceasefire lines to enter the Israeli Sinai Peninsula and Golan Heights.

Egyptian attacked across the heavily-fortified Suez Canal during the first three days, after which they dug in, settling into a stalemate. In the north, the Syrians attacked the Golan Heights at the same time and initially made threatening gains against the greatly outnumbered defenders, but their momentum waned. Within a week, Israel recovered and launched a four-day counter-offensive, driving deep into Syria itself. To relieve this pressure, the Egyptians went back on the offensive, but were decisively defeated; the IDF then counterattacked at the seam between two Egyptian armies, crossed the Suez Canal, and advanced southward and westward in over a week of heavy fighting. Israel encircled elements of Egypt's Third Army after an agreed United Nations ceasefire resolution. This initially prompted tension between the superpowers, but a ceasefire was imposed cooperatively on October 25 to end the war.

By the end of the fighting, The IDF were 40 kilometres (25 mi) from Damascus, from there they were able to shell the outskirts of the city using heavy artillery, and 101 kilometres (63 mi) from Cairo and occupied 1,600 square kilometers west of the Suez Canal. The IDF had also cut the Cairo-Suez road and encircled the bulk of Egypt's Third Army. The Egyptians held only a narrow strip on the east bank of the Canal, occupying some 1,200 square kilometers of Sinai. One source estimated that the Egyptians had 70,000 men and 720 tanks on the East bank of the canal. However, 30,000 of these were now encircled by the IDF.



According to Abraham Rabinovich "...in military terms Israel would recognize its achievement in the war as having few historic parallels. Reeling from a surprise attack on two fronts with the bulk of its army still unmobilized, and confronted by staggering new battlefield realities, Israel's situation was one that could readily bring strong nations to their knees. Yet, within days, it had regained its footing and in less than two weeks it was threatening both enemy capitals, an achievement having few historical parallels. Israel faced not just the Egyptian and Syrian armies but much of the Arab world, and did so with the arm it had most relied on, the air force, tied behind its back. As a military feat, the IDF’s performance in the Yom Kippur War dwarfed that in the Six Day War. [Israeli]Victory emerged from motivation that came from the deepest layers of the nation’s being and from basic military skills that compensated for the grave errors of leadership."

For more information, first hand accounts, and pictures see IDF-Armor

تنسيق-الكليات-لعام سكس نيك كس

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Holyland legacy anointing oil said...

shana tova
שנה טובה בכל התחומים



Ramon said...

I was 25 & I remember well. Be ever vigilant my friend.

The Revolution is Coming said...

I'm surprised Israel didn't end the war with a massive Pan-Arabia kingdom. I think it would have been a much better use for the US to have pulled out of Vietnam and helped you out.


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