Six Day War


The Six Day War occurred in June of 1967 between Israel and the Muslim countries of Jordan, Syria, and Egypt.  The cause of the war lies in long standing and hotly disputed tensions between Israel and its neighboring countries over decades.  Even before the creation of the state of Israel, feuding between Jews in the region of present day Israel and nearby Muslims has been the status quo for decades.  The outcome of the war is less murky, as the Israelis won a decisive hard fought victory that changed the region and has ramifications lasting to this day.


Border clashes, skirmishes, and battles between Israel and these neighboring countries had been a consistent theme for the two decades leading up to this war.  While the exact impetus for the cause of the Six Day War is still hotly debated from a partisan perspective, there are documented events that lead to its commencement. 


Following years of resource disputes, boundary disagreements, and military confrontations, the United Nations placed a peacekeeping force in the Israeli controlled Sinai Peninsula.  Egypt eventually expelled the peacekeeping force and started amassing infantry troops and heavy armor along the border.  With a war apparently imminent, and the state of Israel under the publicized threat of annihilation, they launched a preemptive attack, which was denounced by Egypt and its allies as an unwarranted attack.


There is one obvious reason why this confrontation is widely known as the Six Day War.  Israel dominated the conflict.  Their military superiority was immediately evident as the Israeli Air Force attained complete air supremacy through the destruction of Syria’s, Jordan’s, and Egypt’s air forces.  This allowed ground forces to effectively repel attacks and thwart invading armies, while capturing strategic, cultural, and important targets such as Jerusalem.


When the chips fell after the Six Day War the maps of the region needed to be completely redrawn, despite the assistance Israel’s enemies received from other Muslim countries such as Iraq and Saudi Arabia.  After all was said and done, Israel controlled the strategic Golan Heights from Syria, the Gaza Strip and Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, and the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan.