Monday, June 21, 2004 08:27 PM
37 years ago, on June 5th, 1967, Israel launched an attack against Egypt. The war was quickly expanded to three fronts - Egypt on the south, Jordan on the east, and Syria on the north. The 1967 war was one of Israel's greatest military achievements - in only six days, it has defeated its enemies on all three fronts, and has conquered the Sinay peninsula, Gaza strip, the West Bank (including the Jordanian part of Jerusalem), and the Golan Heights. The war ended on June 10th. To this day, Israel occupies the West Bank and the Gaza Strip (the Occupied Territories).
In the years following the war, Israeli society was in a state of total euphoria. Some rejoiced at the "liberation" of Jewish land, while others basked in the glory of the military victory. It took years for any real objection to the occupation and the subjugation of the Palestinians to rise.
Very few people, however, realized the meaning and consequences of the occupation immediately. On September 22nd, 1967, the ad reproduced here was published in Haaretz, a prominent Israeli newspaper. The ad text reads as follows:
Our right to defend ourselves from destruction
does not give us the right to oppress others
Occupation leads to Foreign Government
Foreign Government leads to Resistance
Resistance leads to Oppression
Oppression leads to Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism
The victims of terror are usually innocent
Possession of the Occupies Territories will make us a nation of murderers and murdered
Let Us Get Out of the Occupies Territories Now
At the bottom are twelve signatures. The last signature in the center row is my father's. I stumbled across this a few months ago and was struck by the accuracy of these predictions, and the courage these people had to make them at that time.