It's fantastic to think that it will soon be 40 years since we reunited Jerusalem. I just came across a new site about the Six-Day War that started me reminiscing!
(Check it out - I've posted the address in my Links under the heading - surprise, surprise - "Six-Day War"!)
I can still remember that euphoric period when the world loved us. David had defeated Goliath again and we naively thought that it would mean a more peaceful future for Israel and her neighbours.
Of course at that time I was a teenager in England and so it may well be that those who lived here in Israel were more realistic. I found my diary from that period and have decided to print the relevant excerpts here (untouched!). Not riveting stuff but authentic.
It should be noted that at the same time I was recording the highs and lows of my own life which included respectively the birth of my cousin Rhona’s baby and the death of my tortoise! And of course it was the age where the traumas of teenage love were the number one topic of conversation. Learning to drive also had its fair share of dramas – especially as it was my Dad who was teaching me! (He learnt to drive on a tank during WW2 so what could you expect?) So the diary entry “I was in tears” refers to an outing with him, not because of news from Israel.
Tues 6th June … Israel already seems to be defeating the Arabs.
Wed 7th June … In the evening I went to Habonim for a meeting. … I volunteered to baby-sit to raise money for Israel. It may not be much but at least I am doing something. … the war is practically over.
Thurs 8th June … Jordan have now stopped fighting. Nasser will not let Egypt give in despite Russia’s having stopped supporting him, but it is only a matter of time before he is defeated. How many people will have died by then though? How many crops will be ruined because there is no-one to reap them? Moshe Dayan says that Israel will not give up Jerusalem again – they now have control of the Arab sector, most of which used to be Jewish anyway!
Sat 9th June … We got a circular from the Bnai Brith this morning saying that one of the executive will come round tomorrow to collect money for Israel.
Sun 10th June … There was a cease-fire this morning at last. Israel have had a resounding victory.
Mon 11th June … The official number of dead from the war was given today – 679 (Israellis) and 2,563 wounded. I got a letter from Shimon (Israelli pen-friend) on Saturday. He was already in the army but the war hadn’t started so I don’t know if he is allright yet. I have written to him so now all I can do is wait.
I am glad to say that my pen-friend did survive the war. But where he is today I do not know!
Here's a very incisive article written by a gentleman called Charles Krauthammer of the Washington Post