Dr. Itzhak Brook, a professor of pediatrics and medicine at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., spoke at the Jewish Community Center on Youngstown’s North Side on Sunday during a program titled Celebrate Jerusalem Day, which focused on the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem, a significant outcome of the war. A look at the Six-Day War:

It began June 5, 1967, a day after Iran had joined a military alliance with Jordan, Egypt and Syria against Israel and the establishment of a Jewish State.

The United States tried unsuccessfully to negotiate with Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser and other Arab leaders to cease their continual threats against Israel.

As a result of years of terrorist attacks and provocations, Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol gave the order for nearly the entire Israeli Air Force to strike Egypt to pre-empt the anticipated Arab attack in what was dubbed as “Operation Moked” (also known as “Operation Focus”).

A few days later, the war largely became a ground battle in the Sinai desert. Also, Jordan’s King Hussein ordered the shelling of West Jerusalem after Israeli planes had destroyed much of the Egyptian air force on the ground.

On June 7, Moshe Dayan, Israel’s defense minister, ordered the Army to enter the Old City as Israeli paratroopers secured the area. Dayan and Yitzhak Rabin, who later became prime minister, formally marked the Jews’ return to their capital and what many considered their holiest site.

Within days, Israeli forces defeated the Jordanians, broke through Syrian lines, reunified Jerusalem and captured the Golan Heights, West Bank and Gaza Strip before accepting a cease-fire agreement June 10, 1967.

Despite the victory, nearly 800 Israeli men were killed. The death toll also included 2,500 Syrians, 15,000 Egyptians and 800 Jordanians.

Source: Jewish Virtual Library

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