Jerusalem Day: Video and reporting from 1967


On June 7, 1967, Israeli military forces capped off the Six Day War with several remarkable feats, including re-capturing the Old City of Jerusalem from Jordan, who had won control of the area in 1948.

From a JTA report bearing the dateline June 6, 1967: 

Jerusalem, a city torn in two for 13 years was about to be reunited. Israeli forces surrounded the Jordan-held Old City of Jerusalem today and reportedly occupied most of the area. The Old City, the second capital of Jordan, is the site of some of the holiest places in the Jewish and Christian religions. Jordanian denial of the right of access for Jews to such holy places as the Wailing Wall has been a bone of contention ever since Israel was established.
In less than 24 hours, Israel destroyed Nasser’s potential to carry out his proclaimed threat to uproot and eradicate the state of Israel, captured strategic positions dominating the entire Sinai Peninsula and held its forces poised to cut off the Suez Canal and recapture the strong point at Sharm-el-Sheikh dominating the Strait of Tiran and controlling Israel’s gateway to the East.

The next day, JTA ran the story confirming the earlier reports, along with a special dateline:

OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM, Jun. 7 (JTA) – For the first time in 20 years, Jewish prayers were held today at the Wailing Wall in Old Jerusalem which was captured earlier in the day by Israeli troops and armor. The Army Chief Chaplain, Col. Shlomo Goren, brought a Torah Scroll to the Wailing Wall and led the prayer service. Dusty and begrimed Israeli soldiers took part with tears in their eyes. Under the 1948 armistice agreement, Jordan had agreed to permit access by Jews to the Wailing Wall but never implemented that part of the agreement.

Jerusalem Day was first observed as an Israeli national holiday in 1979 in accordance with 28 Iyar, the date on the Hebrew calendar that Jerusalem was reclaimed.

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