Friday, May 18, 2012

YOM YERUSHALAYIM: Jerusalem's Day, 28th Iyar 1967

This coming Sunday, May 20th (28th of Iyar, beginning Saturday night), we will celebrate Yom Yerushalayim.

In 1967, Egypt, Syria and Jordan with the help of Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Kuwait, Pakistan, the PLO and Sudan decided to go to war to destroy the State of Israel.  Led by Egypt's president Gamal Abdel Nasser, Egypt mobilized its troops into the Sinai desert, expelled the UN peace keeping forces, and initiated other actions, like closing the Suez canal, which were considered acts of war. They were so confident in their military superiority that the Arab states celebrated victory and rejoiced in the destruction of the Jewish State even before they started the war.

On June 5th 1967 Israel launched a preemptive strike beginning what is known as the Six Days War. 

Against all odds, Israel not only survived the attacks of a much more numerous and stronger army--with no American help--but also conquered the Sinai Peninsula, Judea and Samaria and the Golan heights.

Probably the most important aspect of the Israeli victory was that more than 1900 years after its destruction by the Romans, on the 28th of Iyar 1967, Israel regained control over Yerushalayim (Jerusalem).

That was probably on of the happiest days in the history of the Jewish people, a culmination of our Independence that started in Yom haAtzmaut, 1948.

Many miracles took place in the Six Days war (see for example this) and very especially in the battles for Yerushalayim. We shouldn't be surprised: The Tora already promised Am Israel that when we follow HaShem's will, even if we are outnumbered, God will intervene in our behalf ( Vayikra 26: 7-8) "five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand...".

HaShem, our God,  encouraged us not to be afraid of a more powerful enemy, because He will be fighting with our troops, protecting us and delivering us from destruction (Debarim 20, 1-4): "When you go out to battle against your enemies and see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them; for HaShem your God, who brought you up from the land of Egypt, is with You... HaShem your God is going with you, and will fight with you against your enemies -- to deliver you..."

We were blessed to see that all of God's promises were fulfilled in the miracles that took place during the Six Days war. 

This is why we celebrate Yom Yerushalaim with Hallel and prayers of gratitude to haShem Yitbarakh.

Shabbat Shalom!!!

Candle lighting in NYC: 7:57 PM 
Shabbat ends in NYC: 9.00 PM

 Preparing ourselves for Yom Yerushalayim (Sunday May 20, 28 of Iyar)

√READ More about the Six Days war here

√ WATCH and LISTEN:  YERUSHALAYIM SHEL ZAHAB "Celebrating Jerusalem united"

√ READ Echoes of '67  Israelis today face the greatest threat to their existence since 1967.