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Osprey Men-at-Arms 127 : The Israeli Army in the Middle East Wars 1948-1973

Unlike other nations, Israel does not face an enemy whose sole aim is to defeat its army or to conquer a specified area of land. Various Arab leaders have called for the total destruction of the Jewish state, and Israel regards Middle East conflict as nothing less than a war for Israel's existence. Many nations have lost wars and yet continued to exist in one way or another - Israel assumes in advance that defeat in war means an end to the Jewish nation, and it wages war accordingly. This factor must be grasped to understand Israel's approach to its army and to the strategy, tactics, training and conduct of war. Surrounded by hostile nations, the tiny state has depended since 1948 on the efficiency of its armed services. They have fought six victorious wars, though Israel's population - 3.2 million at the time of the 1973 war - is only a fraction of the 53 million Arabs in the countries on Israel's borders. For those victories the Army - with expert air support - is largely responsible. For a force which began as an irregular, impoverished and improvised army it has a formidable record. John Laffin examines the six wars fought between 1948-73, including the extraordinary Israeli victory of 1967. This is backed by plenty of photographs and eight full page colour plates by Mike Chappell and a further eight pages of commentaries detailing uniforms.

    Contents
  • The Israeli Approach
  • Israel's Six Wars
  • War of Independence 1948-49
  • The 1956 War
  • The Six-Day War
  • The War of Attrition
  • The October War
  • Zahal since 1973
  • The Plates

 

Osprey Men-at-Arms


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