October 15, 2018

The Yom Kippur War is Still an Open Wound

“Yom Kippur is the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people. For the State of Israel in the modern era, however, this date will always be closely linked with the Yom Kippur War, which took place 45 years ago.

A few days ago, Gen. (res.) Yitzhak Brick, who has been serving as the IDF ombudsman for the last ten years, demanded that a commission of inquiry be established to investigate the IDF’s preparedness for war. Brick, a decorated combat soldier from the IDF Armored Corps, has touched upon one of the most sensitive nerves in the history of the State of Israel: the question of our country’s preparedness.

For myself, as well as for others who were already born at the time, the Yom Kippur War is still an open wound. The commissions of inquiry that were established following the war and the number of years that have passed since have done nothing to ease the national trauma that has ensued following the war. It’s true that unfortunately, Israel has been forced to fight in a number of wars since the autumn of 1973, yet not one of them has endangered the existence of the State of Israel like the Yom Kippur War did, and neither has any other war remained so deeply ingrained in the national consciousness.

In October 1973, Israel was caught off guard due to an overabundance of arrogance and self-confidence. The country’s leaders were drunk with power and indifference, which led everyone to the strategic surprise. At the time, the State of Israel and the IDF believed that no power could defeat us, and that Israel’s victory in the Six Day War had completely erased all outside threats. Despite the fact that recently wars of attrition have broken out in both northern and southern Israel, and Palestinian terrorism is spreading, the State of Israel is still absolutely confident that it is invincible and no other country can harm it.”

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