ThroughWestern support the Jewish established their home land in Israel but, in theprocess, eradicated Palestinians. Israelis fought with and nearly demolishedthe Arab military to gain control over valuable land. The Arabs agreed to givethe treasured land in exchange for fighting to be over.
Winning the quick SixDay War against the Arabs raised Israel’s status in the world as a militarypower. TheArab-Israeli conflict began when Israel first became a state in 1948. The landwas given to the Israeli government by the United Nations to create a Jewishstate for the displaced European immigrants from World War II. Israel’s neighboringcountries were angered by this because the land was taken from Palestine andgiven to make Israel. The Arabs believed this was unfair to relocate or evict Palestinianswhen they had no part in displacing the Jews. InMay 1967, Israel celebrated their 19th anniversary of being its ownstate; however, the celebrations ceased soon after. In mid-May, the SovietUnion informed Egypt that Israel had sent troops to invade Syria at theIsraeli-Syrian border.
Gamal Abdel Nasser, president of Egypt at the time, sentaround 130,000 Egyptian troops to stop any attempted invasion of Syria ratherthan to attack Israel. In the Sinai Peninsula, the UN had peacekeeping forcesthat President Nasser ordered be removed. On May 25th, PresidentNasser closed the Tiran Straits, which blocked any ships from entering Israel’smain port. TheEgyptian and Arab government were over-confident in the strength of theirmilitary as they celebrated the decisions Nasser had been making towards theIsraeli tensions. However, due to the backing of the United States military andresources, Israel’s military was much stronger than the supposed larger andbetter land of Egypt and of Syria. The Arabs highly underestimated the power andsuperiority of the Israeli military.
Tothe occupants of Israel, the press and government compared the Arabs to Hitler,causing more of an outrage and will to fight towards the Arabs. The comparisoncaused memories of the Holocaust to resurface and fueled the hate of Nasser inIsrael. United States president at the time, Lyndon Johnson, feared war becauseof America trying to regain their strength after the second world war. He toldboth sides not to fire first because he did not want his land to get involved. TheArab powers feared a US invasion which could completely destroy Egypt and Syriaso they stood down.
Surprisingly, Israel performed their well-rehearsed aerialstrike, starting the war. June 5th: TheFirst Day of the War Early in the morning of June 5th,Israel launched a 200-plane aerial strike on 18 Egyptian air force basesresponding to provocations Egypt had been making. The Air Force flew low toavoid radar detection and made no sound on any radios. They bombed and disabledmore than 80% of Egypt’s air force on the tarmac, leaving them unable to haveany power in the skies. The Egyptian air force was the strongest in the Arabworld and, without the planes in motion, this was the start of the Arab loss. After demolishing nearly all of Egypt’skey to winning the war, Israel offered to not retaliate if Jordan stayed out ofthe war.
This also meant that Israel would not get to capture the Temple Mountin Jerusalem or other holy sites Israel had planned to control. However, Jordan received false informationfrom Egypt about the bombing of Egypt’s sir force. Egypt claimed they had heldmassive, successful attacks inside of Israel and Jordan decided to aid the Arabarmy against Israel. Syria and Iraq also joined the War, aiming for oilrefineries and Jewish communities near the Syrian-controlled Golan Heights.
Toget back at the Arab alliance, Israel attacked Jordanian, Iraqi, and Syrian airbases. By the end of the first day, it was starting to become clear that Israelcould easily overpower the Arab team. June 6th: IsraelDemonstrates Their Power After destroying two thirds of theEgyptian air force, the Israeli Defense Force went in on Egyptian tanks andtroops at the Sinai Peninsula.
Israel was able to defeat Egypt in the desert,despite being outnumbered. After seeing they couldn’t even win a battle theyhad an advantage over, Egypt retreated, leaving the Sinai Peninsula for Israel.Israeli troops positioned themselves on Mount Scopus in Jerusalem to get a goodoverlooking viewpoint of the Old City. Once they found out about theirlocation, Israel could have destroyed Jordanian troops with bombs andartillery; however, they wanted to preserve the city that held suchsignificance for the Jewish people.