Diary from a Besieged Jerusalem

“It was an eventful Shabbat, an historic day for the Jewish people: the State of Israel was declared and immediately recognized by America and 38 other countries.” This is how Menachem Zvi Kadri,a Hungarian-born student at the Hebrew University and later professor of Hebrew linguistics and Israel Prize laureate, described the reception of the news of the declaration of the state in Jerusalem. Kadri, then 23, also described the preparation for what followed: “Armies from Arab countries began invading from all directions with bitter consequences: they conquered several Jewish positions...and in Gush Etzion the battle was over. The whole area was captured and its fighters were taken captive. Ah, the ten years of labor that had taken place here! Three religious kibbutzim, upon which diaspora youth had set their hopes, were wiped off the face of the map...”  

The battles began in Jerusalem with the declaration of the state. After a month, the Jewish Quarter fell into the hands of the Jordanians. On June 11, the Haganah Commander issued a proclamation thanking the residents of Jerusalem for remaining strong: “With heads held high, you have shouldered fateful blows with the enemy’s barbaric bombardment having taken your loved ones from you, and you have quietly suffered the sleepless nights, the water shortages, and the food rations.”

This proclamation was written in a lull between battles and urged residents not to return to their regular routine but rather to continue to fortify the city: “Do this task as you have done so far with discipline, without shedding the burden, without any illusions.”

Can you identify the places? Jerusalem, then and today.
Click to flip the pictures!
הצצה לאוצרות הספרייה הלאומית
No items found.