Exactly 50 years ago, the Six-Day War ended - surprisingly short-lived, without discounts, devastating and for a long time determined the nature of the political situation in the Middle East. By today, it has finally turned into a myth about the invincibility of the Israeli army, and every myth must be debunked.
In fact, the Six Day War is Israel's beating of all neighboring Arab countries (and some not bordering on it, for example Iraq), several hundred times the number of troops in the Jewish state. Since then, it is customary to talk about the IDF in exaggeratedly exalted tones, as almost the best army in the world with a priori brilliant command. But nothing fundamentally new Israeli army then did not show, except for an extremely high level of self-organization and a unique fighting spirit.
The sudden attack of aviation (Israeli) on airfields (Egyptian) is not an innovation. Russian it passed 22 June 1941 year, the Americans - in Pearl Harbor. The coincidences can be traced down to small details. On the eve of the war, the Soviet command ordered not to fire at German aircraft that violated the USSR airspace. Approximately the same order was published in Cairo, too, fearing to destroy the transport plane with its own command, which decided to inspect Sinai from the air.
The Mokead air operation (Focus) included, among other things, the suppression of Egyptian tracking antennas and the use of Egyptian air corridors - up to manipulation with Arab telecom operators. The Mossad had personal data on many Egyptian pilots, knew even the names of members of their families, and well-spoken Arabic specialists entered with oral tracking systems into oral dialogues. All this allowed us to convince the calculations of Egyptian air defense that they are flying their own. At the same time, Soviet air defense calculations in Egypt at that time were not involved, patrol aircraft were removed from duty, and most of the pilots in 7.45 morning were in the dining room - they had breakfast.
During the second wave of raid, such tricks were not used, because there was no resistance from the Egyptian air force and air defense already.
The battle of Abu Ageil became the only direct land clash of the IDF with a more or less equivalent opponent tailored according to the classical canons of the maneuver war. It lasted 24 hours, after which the Egyptian army completely stopped resistance in Sinai.
The Egyptian 2 Infantry Division, reinforced by yet another infantry brigade with six artillery battalions, 88 T-34 and SAU-100 tanks, occupied a huge fortified defensive complex that covered the strategic fork in the central section of the Sinai Peninsula in the immediate vicinity of the Israeli border. Taking it, you could quickly reach several mountain passes in the center of the peninsula, which automatically solved the problem of the entire southern front as such.
The forces of the division of Ariel Sharon were incomparably smaller. After the Israeli infantry destroyed the first line of trenches on the eastern flank of the Egyptians' defense, Sharon really went to an extraordinary step at that time - he concentrated all his artillery at a distance of three to four kilometers from the enemy in a narrow sector of the front, which allowed him to conduct a massive longitudinal fire On Egyptian positions. Then his tanks went around the fortification of the Egyptians from the south, gradually depriving Abu Ageyl of connection with the outside world.
Simultaneously, small groups of airborne troops landed from helicopters from the helicopters, who simply killed artillery in close combat. This, too, did not have the know-how of the IDF - the tactics of aerial sabotage against the enemy's artillery, they spied on the British during the Second World War.
At the end of the day, Israeli artillery simply shot Arab positions that lacked any opportunity to adequately resist without their own artillery and cover from the air. The north went on the attack infantry, from the rear - the tanks. By morning, the Israeli columns were connected in the center of the main Egyptian fortified area. And the next day Sharon tanks, no longer meeting resistance, rushed to the south and west, occupying strategic passes. The Egyptian command gave a panic order to withdraw, but the Israelis were faster, and most of the Egyptian army in the Sinai Peninsula was trapped.
Now there is a version that if the Order of Lenin Marshal Field Marshal Abdel Hakim Amer (Amr) did not panic and gave a strange order for a total retreat from Sinai, without specifying how exactly this should be done, the war would last a little longer, and the losses The IDF would have had more. But now it's easy to judge, and on the third day after the end of the Six Day War, Amer attempted to overthrow the hero of the USSR, President Kemal Abdel Nasser during the attempted military coup, but did not ask, and the Field Marshal committed suicide at the age of 47.
Moreover, it is Amer, and not Soviet advisers, who have a brilliant idea to fix the entire defense of the Sinai Peninsula in one fortified area. Having lost him, he naturally fell into hysterics. Soviet military advisers were not allowed to plan ground operations by Nasser, Amer, and Marshal Abdul Munin Riad. The Arabs behaved arrogantly towards them and used them only as technical servants. Soviet "business travelers" reciprocated with them and retained dislike for the Arab military command to this day, badly referring to them as "untrained maimunas."
Already later it became known that the IDF specially trained tank crews to move at maximum speed and for the first time used for training approximately the technique that now underlies popular "tank biathlons" - shooting at multiple targets while moving at high speed without slowing down the pace. This tactic was creatively redesigned from the experience of the Red Army, which required the maximum acceleration of T-34 towards the heavy German tanks with stronger cannons and armor. At the same time, the Israelis crossed it with the exact opposite - German tactics of the early period of World War II, when during the blitzkrieg, the average tanks simply slipped, for example, the French first line of defense, shooting at everything that moves.
Something similar was happening on the Jordan front. The IDF for 28 hours secured the entourage of East Jerusalem, and the vaunted Jordanian Arab legion simply fled, despite the shouting of British officers. At the same time, the frontal offensive on the Old City was stopped by the fierce resistance of the local people - it is a question of the so-called battle for the Arsenal Hill, the well-fortified position of the Jordanians. Israeli paratroopers lost during the assault 35 soldiers killed, and this battle is considered the most bloody and difficult for the IDF during the entire war.
Since then, the assault of a small complex of buildings of English construction, surrounded by a chain of trenches and passages, by the forces of one 66 500 landing battalion under the command of Josef Joffe is considered something of an exemplary-cultic feat, mainly because of the unexpected selflessness and courage of the Arabs , In other sectors of the front, nothing of the sort has shown. This battle is overgrown with legends and myths, about him compose poetry, although to date it is for certain the movement of almost every one of the 500 paratroopers. Until now, the song on Yoram Taharlev's poems has been confidently kept in the official hit parades of the songs of military ensembles of Israel, and in 2014, and in fact was in the first place. By the way, Jerusalem Day is held in the memorial, built on the battlefield, and in the former command bunker of the Arabs is a military museum.
A day later, on the third day of the war, Colonel Gur stormed the Old City, and by noon - Bethlehem. The remnants of the Jordanian army crossed to the east bank of the Jordan and died down.
The fighting on the Syrian front began only on the fifth day of the war, after the strike parts were released on the Egyptian and Jordanian tracks. This detail is not liked to be remembered in Israel, supporting the myth of a simultaneous fight on three fronts. In fact, six weak Syrian divisions, based on Mount Hermon, were overturned with all the power of the IDF, although now they mostly talk about the feat of a small and specially trained division of mountain shooters - a peculiar military unit that has risen to the top of the mountain.
In general, rumors and myths acquired a large part of the military operations of those days, with myths not only propagandistic, but also purely human, personal. Generally, the global myth of the IDF has already generated itself as an invincible army of a "new type."
Partly there is some truth in this, but the next Yom Kippur War showed that in the Israeli army itself and in intelligence, everything is not so rosy. Then, as the matter progressed, it was really necessary to invent specific methods of warfare. For example, the so-called period of turnover of aviation. This is when the same aircraft, bombed on the Egyptian front, unfolded and attacked the enemy's positions already in the Syrian direction, which in fact seemed to multiply the Air Force by two.
The Six-Day War laid the foundation for the configuration of confrontation in the Middle East for decades to come, but never answered the question whether there is in principle a military solution to the "multi-tiered" conflicts in which the religious component is mixed, ethnic hostility, and superpower interference, and geographic factors Like the possession of water resources.
By the way, both the US and the USSR tried to distance themselves from what was going on until the last, but the events developed so quickly that they forced them to carry out organized pressure on all sides of the conflict, both personally and through the UN structures.
At the same time, Israel's seizure of huge territories by its standards was not as significant as the shameful defeat of the Arab forces. Lessons from it were not extracted, including by Israel itself, where the capricious mood prevailed.
It is now difficult even to estimate approximately the ratio of the potentials of possible adversaries, but it is very easy to imagine in the Middle East a new war of all against all, albeit with a slightly different configuration of actors. Myths are myths, but it will not seem to anybody.