In this highly readable popular history, Hammel ( Chosin ) maintains that the countdown for the Six-Day War began in July 1964, when Israel's completion of a system of canals and aqueducts to carry fresh water from the Sea of Galilee evoked fears in Arab neighbors that Israel was expecting an influx of settlers. Hammel argues convincingly that the 1967 war marked the finest performance of the Israel Defense Force, which in less than a week defeated the armies of Egypt, Jordan and Syria with a minimum of Israeli casualties. Pointing out that the IDF, unlike other military forces around the world, channels its best-educated conscripts into the combat arms rather than into the technical branches, Hammel illustrates the practical benefits of this policy with examples of imaginative improvisations by brigade- and squadron-level commanders during the 1967 war. With its emphasis on the David vs. Goliath aspects of the short decisive war, this proves a stirring tale. Jewish Book Club selection. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/28/1992 Release date: 10/01/1992 Genre: Nonfiction
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