TEL AVIV (Jul. 9)
The Palestine war broke out anew today as the four week United Nations truce expired this morning and Arab and Jewish armies locked in combat. Early today Tel Aviv was subjected to air bombing, while Haifa had a ten-minute air alert during which no bombs were dropped.
Three Jews, including two children, were killed and eight wounded when one of the bombs dropped on the Israeli capital struck a farm school on the city’s northern outskirts. Only one plane was involved in the raid. It was tentatively identified as an Egyptian Spitfire. Iraqi planes struck at Jewish positions surrounding the Arab “triangle” city of Jenin, southeast of Haifa.
Arab artillery was also active at a number of points in the Valley of Esdraelon and near Petach Tikvah. The Arab guns shelling Petach Tikvah, satellite city of Tel Aviv, were apparently attempting to cut the main highway between the Israeli capital and its chief port at Haifa.
The Jews were reported on the offensive by land and in the air in Lower Galilee. At least three Arab troop concentrations–believed to be Fawzi el Kaukuji’s irregulars–were attacked “by Israeli planes.
The Defense Ministry announced that Jewish forces on the southern front yesterday repulsed an Arab attack in a five-hour battle before the truce officially ended. An Egyptian armored force driving from Isdud in the direction of Beer Tuvia was halted, as was an infantry column also striking eastward from the direction of Gaza. Four Jews were killed and six were wounded in the clash.
ISRAELI ARMY SCORES VICTORY IN BATTLE WITH EGYPTIANS
In a series of other clashes along the southern front at least 30 Egyptians were killed and many wounded as a number of villages changed hands. Among the Egyptian troops captured were a number of Sudanese, including a major who had on his person orders to launch an attack on the night of July 7–at least 36 hours before the truce expiration. The Sudanese prisoners claimed that most of the casualties suffered were among their units because the Egyptians did not support them as promised. Ephraim Drori, commander of the Beer Tuvia garrison, also reported that the Israelis captured nine trucks full of arms and ammunition, six field guns, two Bren gun carriers and four anti-tank guns.
A call for every Jew to stand united behind the Israeli Army was voiced here last night by Premier David Ben Gurion at a meeting of the 37-member Provisional State Council. The Premier, who also holds the portfolio of Defense Minister, warned that the most decisive battles of the war are yet to be fought and that the engagements would become more intense and the casualties and suffering greater. Pointing out that the Arab units are stronger than they were before the cease-fire, he added that the Israeli front has been lengthened by the British evacuation of Haifa which, he said, is likely to become the most decisive battlefield of all.