Three huge Hanukkah menorahs were lighted on heights surrounding the city of Jerusalem as Jews throughout the world ushered in the eight-day Festival of Lights which historically marks the Macabbean revolt against the Graeco-Syrians over 2,000 years ago.
This year the ceremony of the lighting of the outdoor candelabra marked not only the Jewish battle for independence centuries ago, but also their recent blows for freedom in establishing a state, beating off the Arab invaders and, more recently, announcing continuance of the transfer of the seat of the government to this city despite the U.N. decision to place Jerusalem under an international trusteeship. The Menorahs were placed on Mt. Zion, to the south of the city; on Mt. Scopus, to the east; and on Herzl Hill, to the west.
The huge torches were lighted from a torch which had been lighted at Modiin, site of the opening encounter of the Macabbee revolt, and borne throughout the country by runners. The runners halted at Rehovoth, during the marathon, where they were greeted by President Weizmann. Later, the runners were greeted by vast throngs at Tel Aviv. Outside of Tel Aviv they were met by a cavalcade of friendly Arabs sheikhs mounted on horses, who escorted them for a distance.
Four thousand members of the Gadna (youth battalions) will participate in a four-day torch relay race scheduled to end at Herzl Hill on Wednesday. Premier David Ben Gurion and Chief of Staff. Brig. Yigal Yadin will address the youths. a torch will be lit in Tel Hai, and another in Tirat Zvi. Three flambeaux were fired tonight in Yehiem and Dagania.
The torches will be taken to Tel Aviv tomorrow, where Knesset Speaker Joseph Sprinzak will welcome them in Knesset Square. Another torch will be brought by a naval unit from Haifa, and still another from an airfield. All will then be borne to President Chaim Weizmann’s office at Hakiryah.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.