ON AN ISIAELI FIGHTING FRONT (Jun. 6)
Jewish fighting unity has at long last reached a harmonious operation, this correspondent can testify from firsthand observation. Against a background of a former British military camp near the front line in the Ras el Ein sector, the writer saw this evening hundreds of new recruits, many of them Haganah men, and scores of Irgun and Stern Group commandos, all of them now under a unified, command within Israel’s Defense Army ranks. All wear identical uniforms and everyone maintains the friendliest possible relations.
An advanced “Chen” unit–(Chen is the Hebrew abbreviation for Cheyl Nashim, or women’s army)–is also attached to this camp. After inching across fields under the constant fire of Iraqi mortars and after passing an orange grove which belongs to Abul Ebben, Jaffa’s town councillor who surrendered the city to the Jews, this correspondent reached an advance Jewish post overlooking the banks of the Yarkon river.
The writer watched the Iraqis entrenched in the Adanti Patres castle, situated near the village of Migdal Jabbu. Looking at the advanced Israeli post–at the barracks, vehicles, canteens, military offices, artillery, light arms, uniforms, military insignia and field telephones–this reporter thought, here is everything that makes a real army.
But there is more here. Here is contempt for the enemy armies born of the love for the homeland. It is a contempt etched sharply in the faces of the young “Sabres,” the native-born Palestinians who do not, despite their fighting enthusiasm, underestimate the Arabs’ strength.
This is really a democratic citizens army that avoids all unnecessary camp discipline. Officers and troops eat and sleep in the same barracks, but the discipline necessary to conduct a military operation is here. This is a real army–the first Jewish army in centuries.