Moshe Dayan

Moshe Dayan

Overview
Moshe Dayan was an Israeli military leader and politician. The fourth Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces
Israel Defense Forces
The Israel Defense Forces , commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal , are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force and navy. It is the sole military wing of the Israeli security forces, and has no civilian jurisdiction within Israel...

 (1953–58), he became a fighting symbol to the world of the new State of Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

. He went on to become Defense Minister and later Foreign Minister of Israel.

Moshe Dayan was born on Kibbutz
Kibbutz
A kibbutz is a collective community in Israel that was traditionally based on agriculture. Today, farming has been partly supplanted by other economic branches, including industrial plants and high-tech enterprises. Kibbutzim began as utopian communities, a combination of socialism and Zionism...

 Degania Alef near the shores of Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee
Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee, also Kinneret, Lake of Gennesaret, or Lake Tiberias , is the largest freshwater lake in Israel, and it is approximately in circumference, about long, and wide. The lake has a total area of , and a maximum depth of approximately 43 m...

) in pre-Mandate Palestine
Palestine
Palestine is a conventional name, among others, used to describe the geographic region between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, and various adjoining lands....

.
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Unanswered Questions
Quotations

There is no more Palestine. Finished . . .

TIME Magazine (30 July 1973)

It is not in our hands to prevent the murder of workers… and families… but it is in our hands to fix a high price for our blood, so high that the Arab community and the Arab military forces will not be willing to pay it.

As quoted in Warrior: the autobiography of Ariel Sharon (1989)

We have no solution, you shall continue to live like dogs, and whoever wishes may leave, and we will see where this process leads.

Yossi Beilin, Mehiro shel Ihud (Revivim, 1985), 42 speaking of the Palestinians
Encyclopedia
Moshe Dayan was an Israeli military leader and politician. The fourth Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces
Israel Defense Forces
The Israel Defense Forces , commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal , are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force and navy. It is the sole military wing of the Israeli security forces, and has no civilian jurisdiction within Israel...

 (1953–58), he became a fighting symbol to the world of the new State of Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

. He went on to become Defense Minister and later Foreign Minister of Israel.

Early life


Moshe Dayan was born on Kibbutz
Kibbutz
A kibbutz is a collective community in Israel that was traditionally based on agriculture. Today, farming has been partly supplanted by other economic branches, including industrial plants and high-tech enterprises. Kibbutzim began as utopian communities, a combination of socialism and Zionism...

 Degania Alef near the shores of Lake Kinneret (Sea of Galilee
Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee, also Kinneret, Lake of Gennesaret, or Lake Tiberias , is the largest freshwater lake in Israel, and it is approximately in circumference, about long, and wide. The lake has a total area of , and a maximum depth of approximately 43 m...

) in pre-Mandate Palestine
Palestine
Palestine is a conventional name, among others, used to describe the geographic region between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, and various adjoining lands....

. His parents were Shmuel
Shmuel Dayan
Shmuel Dayan was a Zionist activist during the British Mandate of Palestine and an Israeli politician who served in the first three Knessets.-Biography:...

 and Devorah, Jewish immigrants from Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

.

He was the second child to be born on the kibbutz (after Gideon Baratz). He was named Moshe after Moshe Barsky, the first member of the kibbutz to be killed in an Arab attack. Soon after, his parents moved to Nahalal
Nahalal
-External links:** UNESCO* Jewish Agency for Israel*, "Jews made a garden" - aerial photo of Nahalal , and a girl from Girls' Agricultural Training Farm , at Google Books....

, the first moshav
Moshav
Moshav is a type of Israeli town or settlement, in particular a type of cooperative agricultural community of individual farms pioneered by the Labour Zionists during the second aliyah...

 (settlement) to be established. Moshe attended the Agricultural School there.

Militancy


At the age of 14, he joined the newly formed Jewish militia known as the Haganah
Haganah
Haganah was a Jewish paramilitary organization in what was then the British Mandate of Palestine from 1920 to 1948, which later became the core of the Israel Defense Forces.- Origins :...

. In 1938 he joined the Palestine Supernumerary Police and became a motorized patrol ("MAN") commander. One of his military heroes was the British pro-Zionist officer Orde Wingate, under whom he served in several Special Night Squads
Special Night Squads
The Special Night Squads were a joint British-Jewish counter-insurgency unit, established by Captain Orde Wingate in Palestine in 1938, during the 1936-1939 Arab revolt. The SNS comprised British infantry soldiers and Jewish Supernumerary Police...

 operations.
On 3 October 1939 he was the commanding instructor for Haganah Leader's courses held at Yavniel when two British Palestine Police Officers discovered a quantity of illegal rifles. Haganah HQ ordered the camp to be evacuated. Leading a group of 43 men through Wadi Bira
Al-Bira, Baysan
Al-Bira is a depopulated former Palestinian village located7.5 km north of Baysan. During Operation Gideon, the village was occupied by the Golani Brigade.-History:...

, early the following morning, they were arrested by 12 to 15 Arab members of the Transjordan Frontier Force
Transjordan Frontier Force
The Transjordan Frontier Force was formed, on 1 April 1926, as a para-military border guard to defend Trans-Jordan's northern and southern borders. The TJFF was also an Imperial Service regiment whose Imperial Service soldiers agreed to serve wherever required and not just within the borders of...

. Questions were asked about why such a large force were arrested by a much smaller one. Moshe Carmel
Moshe Carmel
Moshe Carmel was an Israeli soldier and politician who served as Minister of Transportation for eight years.-Background:Born in Mińsk Mazowiecki in the Russian Empire , Carmel emigrated to Mandate Palestine in 1924 when he was 13 years old. He was a founding member of kibbutz Na'an, and was...

, the group's deputy commander, was also critical of Dayan's willingness to talk to his interrogators in Acre prison
Acre Prison break
The Acre Prison break was a operation undertaken by the Irgun on May 4, 1947 in the British Mandate of Palestine, in which its men broke through the walls of Acre prison and freed 28 incarcerated Irgun and Lehi members.-Background:...

. On 30 October 1939, most of the group were sentenced to ten years in prison. Seven months later Dayan was replaced as the prisoner's representative after it was discovered that moves were being made to get him an individual pardon. On 16 February 1941, after Chaim Weizmann
Chaim Weizmann
Chaim Azriel Weizmann, , was a Zionist leader, President of the Zionist Organization, and the first President of the State of Israel. He was elected on 1 February 1949, and served until his death in 1952....

's intervention in London, they were all released.

Dayan was assigned to a small Australian-Palmach-Arab reconnaissance task force, formed in preparation for the Allied invasion of Syria and Lebanon
Syria-Lebanon campaign
The Syria–Lebanon campaign, also known as Operation Exporter, was the Allied invasion of Vichy French-controlled Syria and Lebanon, in June–July 1941, during World War II. Time Magazine referred to the fighting as a "mixed show" while it was taking place and the campaign remains little known, even...

 and attached to the Australian 7th Division. Using his home kibbutz
Kibbutz
A kibbutz is a collective community in Israel that was traditionally based on agriculture. Today, farming has been partly supplanted by other economic branches, including industrial plants and high-tech enterprises. Kibbutzim began as utopian communities, a combination of socialism and Zionism...

 of Hanita
Hanita
Hanita is a kibbutz in northern Israel. Located in the western Galilee approximately 15 kilometres northeast of Nahariya, it falls under the jurisdiction of Mateh Asher Regional Council. In 2011 it had a population of 500....

 as a forward base, the unit frequently infiltrated Vichy French
Vichy France
Vichy France, Vichy Regime, or Vichy Government, are common terms used to describe the government of France that collaborated with the Axis powers from July 1940 to August 1944. This government succeeded the Third Republic and preceded the Provisional Government of the French Republic...

 Lebanon, wearing traditional Arab dress, on covert surveillance missions.

Injury and eye patch


On June 7, 1941, the night before the invasion of the Syria-Lebanon Campaign, Dayan's unit crossed the border and secured two bridges over the Litani River
Litani River
The Litani River is an important water resource in southern Lebanon. The river rises in the fertile Beqaa Valley valley, west of Baalbek, and empties into the Mediterranean Sea north of Tyre. Exceeding 140 km in length, the Litani River is the longest river in Lebanon and provides an average...

. When they were not relieved as expected, at 04:00 on 8 June, the unit perceived that it was exposed to possible attack and – on its own initiative – assaulted a nearby Vichy police station, capturing it in a firefight. A few hours later, as Dayan was using binoculars
Binoculars
Binoculars, field glasses or binocular telescopes are a pair of identical or mirror-symmetrical telescopes mounted side-by-side and aligned to point accurately in the same direction, allowing the viewer to use both eyes when viewing distant objects...

, they were struck by a French bullet, propelling metal and glass fragments into his left eye and causing it severe damage. Six hours passed before he could be evacuated, and he would have died if not for Bernard Dov Protter who took care of him until they were evacuated. Dayan lost the eye. In addition, the damage to the extraocular muscles
Extraocular muscles
The extraocular muscles are the six muscles that control the movements of the eye . The actions of the extraocular muscles depend on the position of the eye at the time of muscle contraction.-List of muscles:-Importance:...

 was such that Dayan could not be fitted with a glass eye, and he was forced to adopt the black eyepatch
Eyepatch
An eyepatch or eye pad is a small patch that is worn in front of one eye. It may be a cloth patch attached around the head by an elastic band or by a string, or an adhesive bandage. It is often worn by people to cover a lost or injured eye, but it also has a therapeutic use in children for the...

 that became his trademark.
In the years immediately following, the disability caused him some psychological pain. Dayan wrote in his autobiography: "I reflected with considerable misgivings on my future as a cripple without a skill, trade, or profession to provide for my family." He added that he was "ready to make any effort and stand any suffering, if only I could get rid of my black eye patch. The attention it drew was intolerable to me. I preferred to shut myself up at home, doing anything, rather than encounter the reactions of people wherever I went."

Family


Ruth Dayan
Ruth Dayan
Ruth Dayan was married to the Israeli general and defense minister Moshe Dayan. She founded the Maskit fashion house and is active in many social causes.-Biography:...

, his first wife, divorced Moshe in 1971 after 36 years of marriage due to his numerous extramarital affairs. After the divorce, Dayan remarried. In the Israeli best-selling book that followed the divorce, Or Did I Dream The Dream?, Ruth Dayan wrote a chapter about "Moshe's bad taste in women."

Moshe and Ruth's daughter, Yael Dayan
Yael Dayan
Yaël Dayan is an Israeli politician and author. She served as a member of the Knesset between 1992 and 2003, and is currently the chair of Tel Aviv city council. She is the daughter of Moshe Dayan and sister of Assi Dayan.-Biography:...

, a novelist, is best known in Israel for her book, My Father, His Daughter about her relationship with her father. She followed him into politics and has been a member of several Israeli leftist parties over the years. She has served in the Knesset
Knesset
The Knesset is the unicameral legislature of Israel, located in Givat Ram, Jerusalem.-Role in Israeli Government :The legislative branch of the Israeli government, the Knesset passes all laws, elects the President and Prime Minister , approves the cabinet, and supervises the work of the government...

 and on the Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv , officially Tel Aviv-Yafo , is the second most populous city in Israel, with a population of 404,400 on a land area of . The city is located on the Israeli Mediterranean coastline in west-central Israel. It is the largest and most populous city in the metropolitan area of Gush Dan, with...

 City Council, and is the current Deputy Mayor of Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv , officially Tel Aviv-Yafo , is the second most populous city in Israel, with a population of 404,400 on a land area of . The city is located on the Israeli Mediterranean coastline in west-central Israel. It is the largest and most populous city in the metropolitan area of Gush Dan, with...

/Jaffa
Jaffa
Jaffa is an ancient port city believed to be one of the oldest in the world. Jaffa was incorporated with Tel Aviv creating the city of Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel. Jaffa is famous for its association with the biblical story of the prophet Jonah.-Etymology:...

, responsible for social services. One of his sons, Assi Dayan
Assi Dayan
Asaf "Assi" Dayan is an Israeli film director, actor, screenwriter and producer.-Personal life:Assi Dayan is the youngest son of Israeli general and minister of defence Moshe Dayan and peace activist Ruth Dayan . He has two siblings: politician and author Yael Dayan, born 1939, and sculptor Ehud ...

, is an actor and a movie director. Another son, novelist Ehud Dayan, who was cut out of his father's will, wrote a book critical of his father, after Dayan died, mocking his military, writing, and political skills and calling him a "philanderer."

Military career


In 1947, Dayan was appointed to the Haganah
Haganah
Haganah was a Jewish paramilitary organization in what was then the British Mandate of Palestine from 1920 to 1948, which later became the core of the Israel Defense Forces.- Origins :...

 General Staff working on Arab affairs, in particular recruiting agents to gain information about irregular Arab forces in Palestine. His brother, Zorik, was killed in fighting, 14 April 1948. On 22 April Dayan was appointed in charge of abandoned Arab property in newly conquered Haifa. To put a stop to the out-of-control looting he ordered that anything that could be used by the army be stored in Haganah
Haganah
Haganah was a Jewish paramilitary organization in what was then the British Mandate of Palestine from 1920 to 1948, which later became the core of the Israel Defense Forces.- Origins :...

 warehouses and the rest be distributed amongst Jewish agricultural settlements. On 18 May, Dayan was given command of the Jordan Valley sector and in a nine hour battle his troops stopped the Syrian advance
Battles of the Kinarot Valley
The Battles of the Kinarot Valley , is a collective name for a series of military engagements between the Haganah and the Syrian army during the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, fought between May 15–22, 1948 in the Kinarot Valley. It includes two main sites: the Battle of Degania–Tzemah, and battles near...

 South of the Sea of Galilee
Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee, also Kinneret, Lake of Gennesaret, or Lake Tiberias , is the largest freshwater lake in Israel, and it is approximately in circumference, about long, and wide. The lake has a total area of , and a maximum depth of approximately 43 m...

.

89th Battalion


In June he became the first commander of the 89th Battalion, part of Sadeh
Yitzhak Sadeh
Yitzhak Sadeh , was the commander of the Palmach, one of the founders of the Israel Defense Forces at the time of the establishment of the State of Israel and a cousin of British philosopher Isaiah Berlin.-Biography:...

's Armoured Brigade. His methods of recruiting volunteers from other army units such as the Golani
Golani Brigade
The Golani Brigade is an Israeli infantry brigade that is subordinated to the 36th Division and traditionally associated with the Northern Command. Its symbol is a green tree on a yellow background, and its soldiers wear a brown beret. It is one of the most highly decorated infantry units in the...

 and Kiryati
Kiryati Brigade
The Kiryati Brigade was formed in 1948 by David Ben-Gurion and was one of the original nine brigades that made up the Haganah. The Kiryati Brigade was initially responsible for securing the area in and around Tel Aviv...

 Brigades provoked complaints from their commanders. On 20 June 1948, two men from one of his companies were killed in a confrontation with Irgun
Irgun
The Irgun , or Irgun Zevai Leumi to give it its full title , was a Zionist paramilitary group that operated in Mandate Palestine between 1931 and 1948. It was an offshoot of the earlier and larger Jewish paramilitary organization haHaganah...

 members trying to bring weapons ashore from the Altalena at Kfar Vitkin
Kfar Vitkin
Kfar Vitkin is a moshav in central Israel. Located near Netanya, it falls under the jurisdiction of Hefer Valley Regional Council and was the first Jewish settlement in the valley. In 2007 it had a population of 1,700....

. During Operation Danny
Operation Danny
Operation Danny was an Israeli military offensive launched at the end of the first truce of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. The objectives were to capture territory east of Tel Aviv and then to push inland and relieve the Jewish population and forces in Jerusalem...

 he led his Battalion in a brief raid through Lod
Lydda
Lydda can refer to:*Lod, also named Lydda*Exodus from Lydda and Ramla, the Palestinian exodus from the city in July 1948...

 in which nine of his men were killed. His Battalion was then transferred to the South where they captured Karatiya, close to Faluja, 15 July. His withdrawal of his troops after only 2 hours leaving a Givati
Givati Brigade
The Givati Brigade is an infantry brigade of the Israel Defense Forces, and serves as its amphibious force. Givati soldiers are designated by purple berets...

 Company to face an Egyptian counter attack led to Givati commander Shimon Avidan
Shimon Avidan
Shimon Avidan , born Shimon Koch , was an Israeli soldier and officer, the commander of the Givati Brigade during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war....

 to demand that Dayan be disciplined for breach of discipline. Chief of Staff Yigal Yadin instructed the Military Attorney General to proceed but the case was dismissed.

Jerusalem


On 23 July 1948, on Ben Gurion
Ben Gurion
Ben Gurion can refer to the following persons:* Nicodemus ben Gurion, a Biblical figure, probably a rich Jewish member of the Sanhedrin that felt sympathetic to Jesus Christ...

's insistence over General Staff opposition, Dayan was appointed Military Commander of Jewish controlled areas of Jerusalem. In this post he launched two military offensives. Both were night-time operations and both were failures. On 17 August he sent two companies to attempt to occupy the hillsides around Government House
East Talpiot
East Talpiot is a neighborhood in southeastern Jerusalem, established in 1973 in the upswing of building that followed the Six-Day War. The neighborhood is located in East Jerusalem, unilaterally annexed to Israel but internationally recognized as being a part of the West Bank...

 but they retreated suffering casualties. On the night of 20 October 1948, to coincide with the end of Operation Yoav
Operation Yoav
Operation Yoav was an Israeli military operation carried out from 15–22 October 1948 in the Negev Desert, during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Its goal was to drive a wedge between the Egyptian forces along the coast and the Beersheba–Hebron–Jerusalem road and ultimately to conquer the whole Negev...

 further south, Operation Wine Press was launched. Its objective was to capture Bethlehem
Bethlehem
Bethlehem is a Palestinian city in the central West Bank of the Jordan River, near Israel and approximately south of Jerusalem, with a population of about 30,000 people. It is the capital of the Bethlehem Governorate of the Palestinian National Authority and a hub of Palestinian culture and tourism...

 via Beit Jala
Beit Jala
Beit Jala is an Arab Christian town in the Bethlehem Governorate of the West Bank. Beit Jala is located 10 km south of Jerusalem, on the western side of the Hebron road, opposite Bethlehem, at altitude...

. A force of six companies set out but were pinned down by machine-gun fire in the wadi below Beit Jala and were forced to withdraw.

Following the assassination of Count Bernadotte, 17 September 1948, it was over twenty hours before he imposed a curfew over Jewish Jerusalem and began arresting members of Lehi
Lehi (group)
Lehi , commonly referred to in English as the Stern Group or Stern Gang, was a militant Zionist group founded by Avraham Stern in the British Mandate of Palestine...

, the underground organisation believed to be responsible. One reason for this delay was the need to bring loyal troops from Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv , officially Tel Aviv-Yafo , is the second most populous city in Israel, with a population of 404,400 on a land area of . The city is located on the Israeli Mediterranean coastline in west-central Israel. It is the largest and most populous city in the metropolitan area of Gush Dan, with...

 into the city.
In the autumn of 1948 he was involved in negotiations with Abdullah el Tell
Abdullah el Tell
Abdullah el-Tell, served in the Transjordanian Arab Legion during the 1948 war in Palestine rising from the rank of company commander to become Military Governor of the Old City of Jerusalem...

, the Jordanian Military Commander of East Jerusalem, over a lasting cease-fire for the Jerusalem area. The following year, 1949, he had at least five face-to-face meetings with King Abdullah of Jordan
Abdullah I of Jordan
Abdullah I bin al-Hussein, King of Jordan [‘Abd Allāh ibn al-Husayn] عبد الله الأول بن الحسين born in Mecca, Second Saudi State, was the second of three sons of Sherif Hussein bin Ali, Sharif and Emir of Mecca and his first wife Abdiyya bint Abdullah...

 over the Armistice Agreement and the search for a longer term peace agreement. Following an incident in February 1949 he was court-martialed for disobeying an order from his superior, Major General Zvi Ayalon OC Central Command. He was found guilty by a military court and briefly demoted from Lieutenant Colonel to Major. This did not prevent him from attending the Armistice negotiations on the island of Rhodes
Rhodes
Rhodes is an island in Greece, located in the eastern Aegean Sea. It is the largest of the Dodecanese islands in terms of both land area and population, with a population of 117,007, and also the island group's historical capital. Administratively the island forms a separate municipality within...

 and on 29 June 1949 he was appointed head of all Israeli delegations to the Mixed Armistice Commission
1949 Armistice Agreements
The 1949 Armistice Agreements are a set of agreements signed during 1949 between Israel and neighboring Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, and Syria. The agreements ended the official hostilities of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, and established armistice lines between Israeli forces and the forces in...

 meetings. Despite being involved in these negotiations Dayan recommended to Ben Gurion, in September 1949, that the army should be used to open the road to Jerusalem and to gain access to the Western Wall
Western Wall
The Western Wall, Wailing Wall or Kotel is located in the Old City of Jerusalem at the foot of the western side of the Temple Mount...

 and Mount Scopus
Mount Scopus
Mount Scopus , جبل المشهد , جبل الصوانة) is a mountain in northeast Jerusalem. In the wake of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, Mount Scopus became a UN protected Jewish exclave within Jordanian-occupied territory until the Six-Day War in 1967...

.

Southern Command


in 25 October 1949 he was promoted to Major-General and appointed commander of the Southern Command. Most of the staff officers resigned in protest at his replacement of the previous commander, Yigal Allon
Yigal Allon
Yigal Allon was an Israeli politician, a commander of the Palmach, and a general in the IDF. He served as one of the leaders of Ahdut HaAvoda party and the Israeli Labor party, and acting Prime Minister of Israel, and was a member of the Knesset and government minister from the 10th through the...

. The major problem in the south of the country was Palestinians crossing the border, "infiltrating", from the Gaza Strip, Sinai, and the Hebron hills. Dayan was an advocate of a "harsh" policy along the border. In Jerusalem he had given instructions that infiltrators killed in no-man's-land or the Arab side of the border should be moved on to the Israeli side before UN inspections. Allon had already introduced a 7 kilometre "free-fire" zone along the southern borders. In the spring of 1950 Dayan authorized the Israeli airforce
IAF
IAF may refer to the following air forces:* Indian Air Force* Indonesian Air Force* Iraqi Air Force* Israeli Air Force* Italian Air ForceIAF may also refer to:* International of Anarchist Federations* Indian Armed Forces...

 to strafe shepherds and their herds in the Beit Govrin area. There were also strafing attacks on bedouin
Bedouin
The Bedouin are a part of a predominantly desert-dwelling Arab ethnic group traditionally divided into tribes or clans, known in Arabic as ..-Etymology:...

 camps in the Gaza
Gaza
Gaza , also referred to as Gaza City, is a Palestinian city in the Gaza Strip, with a population of about 450,000, making it the largest city in the Palestinian territories.Inhabited since at least the 15th century BC,...

 area. In early 1950 700 bedouin, Azame
Shaqib al-Salam
Shaqib al-Salam or Segev Shalom is a Bedouin town and a local council in the South District of Israel, southeast of Beersheba.According to the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics , the population of Shaqib was 6,500 in December 2006...

, were expelled from the South Hebron area and in September 1950 several thousand more were driven from the demilitarized zone at Al-Ajua During 1950 the remaining population of al Majdal were transferred to the Gaza Strip In a notorious incident, 31 May 1950, the army forced 120 Arabs across the Jordanian border at 'Arava
Arabah
The Arabah , also known as Aravah, is a section of the Great Rift Valley running in a north-south orientation between the southern end of the Sea of Galilee down to the Dead Sea and continuing further south where it ends at the Gulf of Aqaba. It includes most of the border between Israel to the...

. "Two or three dozen" died of thirst before reaching safety. During 1950 Dayan developed a policy of punitive cross border reprisal raids. IDF squads were sent into the Gaza strip to lay mines. The first retaliation raid on a village occurred 20 March 1950 when 6 Arabs were killed at Khirbet Jamrura. On 18 June 1950, Dayan explained his thinking to the Mapai
Mapai
Mapai was a left-wing political party in Israel, and was the dominant force in Israeli politics until its merger into the Israeli Labor Party in 1968...

 faction in the Knesset
Knesset
The Knesset is the unicameral legislature of Israel, located in Givat Ram, Jerusalem.-Role in Israeli Government :The legislative branch of the Israeli government, the Knesset passes all laws, elects the President and Prime Minister , approves the cabinet, and supervises the work of the government...

:

[It is] the only method that [has] proved effective, not justified or moral but effective, when [the] Arab plants mines on our side. If we try to search for that Arab, it has no value. But if we harass the nearby village ... then the population there comes out against [the saboteur]... and the Egyptian Government and the Transjordanian government are [willing]... to prevent such incidents, because their prestige is [at stake]... as the Jews have opened fire, and they are unready to begin a war ...
The method of collective punishment so far has proved effective ... There are no other effective methods.


On 8 March 1951 eighteen were killed at Idna. On 20 October 1951 several houses and an ice factory in eastern Gaza City were destroyed by two companies from Battalion 79 (7th Brigade); dozens were killed and injured. 6 January 1952 an armoured infantry company from the same battalion attacked a bedouin camp, Nabahim, near Bureij refugee camp killing fifteen. Glubb Pasha noted that the objective of this new strategy seemed to "be merely to kill Arabs indiscriminately." Dayan saw it as an "eye for an eye".

At the end on 1951, Dayan attended a course at the British Army's Senior Officers' School in Devizes
Devizes
Devizes is a market town and civil parish in Wiltshire, England. The town is about southeast of Chippenham and about east of Trowbridge.Devizes serves as a centre for banks, solicitors and shops, with a large open market place where a market is held once a week...

, England. In May 1952 he was appointed Operational Commander of the Northern Command.

Chief of Staff


1952 was a time of economic crisis for the new state. Faced with demands of a 20% cut in budget and the discharge of 6,000 members of the IDF, Yigal Yadin resigned as Chief of Staff, November 1952, and was replaced by Mordechai Maklef. Dayan was promoted to Head of Operations (G) Branch, the second most senior post on the General Staff, December 1952. One of Dayans actions in this post was to commence work on the canal diverting water from the River Jordan, September 1953.

During 1953, Prime Minister and Minister of Defence David Ben Gurion began to make preparations for his retirement from his leadership roles. His choice for the post of Minister of Defence was Pinhas Lavon
Pinhas Lavon
Pinhas Lavon was an Israeli politician, minister and labor leader, best known for the Lavon Affair.-Early life:Lavon was born as Pinhas Lubianiker in Kopychyntsi in what was previously Galicia in Austria-Hungary . He studied law at the University of Lviv, where he organized Histadrut organizations...

 who became acting MoD in the autumn of 1953. Lavon and Maklef were unable to work together and Maklef resigned. Dayan was immediately appointed CoS, 7 December 1953. This appointment was Ben Gurion's last act as Prime Minister before his replacement by acting Prime Minister Moshe Sharett
Moshe Sharett
Moshe Sharett on 15 October 1894, died 7 July 1965) was the second Prime Minister of Israel , serving for a little under two years between David Ben-Gurion's two terms.-Early life:...

.

On taking over command, based on Ben-Gurion's three year defence programme, Dayan carried out a major reorganisation of the Israeli army which, among others, included:
  • Strengthened combat units at the expense of administrative 'tail'.
  • Raising the Intelligence and Training Branches of the Israeli Army.
  • Surrendering the activities of stores and procurement to the civilian Ministry of Defense.
  • Revamping the mobilisation scheme and ensuring earmarking for adequate equipment.
  • Starting a military academy for officers of the rank of major and above.
  • Emphasised strike forces (Air Force, Armour) and on training of Commando battalions.
  • Developed GADNA
    Gadna (Israel)
    Gadna is an Israeli military program to prepare youth for their mandatory military service in the Israel Defense Forces or Border Police. A one week program of discipline and military learning run mostly by soldiers of the Nahal infantry brigade, as well as by soldiers recruited and trained...

    , a youth wing for military training.

Cross-border operations


In July 1953, whilst on the General Staff, Dayan was party to the setting up of Force 101, which was to specialise in night-time cross-border retaliation raids. He was initially opposed to setting up such a group because he argued it would undermine his attempts to prepare the IDF for an offensive war. Force 101's first official operation was to attack, on 28 August 1953, the Bureij Refugee Camp, during which they killed 20 refugees.

By October 1953, Dayan was closely involved with 101. He was one of the main architects of the attack on Qibya
Qibya
Qibya is a Palestinian village in the West Bank, located northwest of Ramallah and exactly north of the large Israeli city of Modi'in. It is part of the Ramallah and al-Bireh Governorate, and according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, it had a population of approximately 4,901 in...

, on the night of 14/15 October 1953. The General Staff order stated "temporarily to conquer the village of Qibya – with the aim of blowing up houses and hitting the inhabitants". The Central Command Operation Instructions were more specific: "carry out destruction and maximum killings." The operation was carried out by 130 IDF soldiers of whom a third came from Force 101. They carried 70 kg of explosives, blew up 45 houses and killed 69 people. The international criticism over the number of civilians killed led to a change of tactics. It was the last large-scale attack by the IDF on civilian buildings. In the future, targets were to be the Arab Legion, the Frontier Police, and the Egyptian or the Syrian armies. Dayan merged Force 101 with the paratroop Brigade and assigned its command to the commander of 101 who had led the Qibya attack, Ariel Sharon
Ariel Sharon
Ariel Sharon is an Israeli statesman and retired general, who served as Israel’s 11th Prime Minister. He has been in a permanent vegetative state since suffering a stroke on 4 January 2006....

.

Dayan had a difficult relationship with Minister of Defence Lavon: There were issues over spending priorities and over Lavon's dealings with senior members of the IDF behind Dayan's back. This came to an end with Lavon's resignation over who ordered the sabotage operation
Lavon Affair
The Lavon Affair refers to a failed Israeli covert operation, code named Operation Susannah, conducted in Egypt in the Summer of 1954. As part of the false flag operation, a group of Egyptian Jews were recruited by Israeli military intelligence for plans to plant bombs inside Egyptian, American and...

 in Egypt that led to the trial of a number of Egyptian Jews, two of whom were executed.

Dayan believed in the value of punitive cross-border retaliation raids:
We cannot save each water pipe from explosion or each tree from being uprooted. We cannot prevent the murder of workers in orange groves or of families in their beds. But we can put a very high price on their blood, a price so high that it will no longer be worthwhile for the Arabs, the Arab armies, for the Arab states to pay it.


Prime Minister Sharett was an advocate of restraint and was not as confident in the effectiveness of the attacks. When seeking approval for operations Dayan down-played the scale of the raids in order to get his approval. There were fewer large scale cross border raids in 1954. Between December 1953 and September 1954 at least 48 Arabs were killed in over 18 cross border raids. Fifteen of the dead were civilians: farmers, shepherds and a doctor; two of the dead were women. With Ben Gurion's return this changed. On the night of 28 February 1955 Operation Black Arrow
Retribution operations
The retribution operations were military operations carried out by the Israel Defense Forces during the 1950s and 1960s. These actions were in response to constant fedayeen terror attacks during which the Palestinian militants infiltrated from Syria, Egypt and Jordan into Israel to carry out...

 (Mivtza Hetz Shahor) was launched against an Egyptian army camp South of Gaza City. The IDF force consisted of 120 paratroops and suffered fourteen dead; 36 Egyptian soldiers were killed as well as two Palestinian civilians. Ben Gurion and Dayan had told Sharett that their estimate of Egyptian casualties was ten. Four months later, 31 August 1955, despite Sharett's opposition, three paratroop companies attacked the British built Tegart fort
Tegart fort
A Tegart fort is a style of militarized police "fortress" constructed throughout Palestine during the British Mandatory period.The forts are named after British police officer and engineer Sir Charles Tegart, who designed them in 1938 based on his experiences in the Indian insurgency.Tens of the...

 in Khan Yunis
Khan Yunis
Khan Yunis - often spelt Khan Younis or Khan Yunnis - is a city and adjacent refugee camp in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics the city, its refugee camp, and its immediate surroundings had a total population of 180,000 in 2006...

. The operational orders (Mivtza Elkayam) called for "killing as many enemy soldiers as possible." The police station and a number of other buildings were blown-up and seventy-two Egyptians and Palestinians were killed.

Armaments


Between 1955 and 1956, Dayan and Shimon Peres
Shimon Peres
GCMG is the ninth President of the State of Israel. Peres served twice as the eighth Prime Minister of Israel and once as Interim Prime Minister, and has been a member of 12 cabinets in a political career spanning over 66 years...

 negotiated a series of large weapons contracts with France. On 10 November 1955 an agreement was signed for the delivery of 100 AMX-13
AMX-13
The AMX-13 is a French light tank produced from 1953 to 1985. It served with the French Army and was exported to over twenty-five other nations...

 tanks and assorted anti-tank weapons. On 24 June 1956, a $80 million deal was agreed involving 72 Mystere IV jets, 120 AMX-13 tanks, 40 Sherman tanks and 18 105mm artillery
Obusier de 155 mm Modèle 50
Obusier de 155 mm Modèle 50 was a French 155 mm 30 calibre howitzer of Cold War era that remained in service with some nations until the 1990s. The gun has a split trail, large slotted muzzle-break, four-wheeled bogie and a retractable firing pedestal beneath the axles...

. The Mystere were in addition to 53 already on order. At the end of September 1956, a further 100 Sherman tanks, 300 half tracks and 300 6x6 trucks were added.

By the beginning of November 1956 the Israeli army had 380 tanks.

Escalation up to the Suez Crisis



Following the 1955 elections
Israeli legislative election, 1955
Elections for the third Knesset were held in Israel on 26 July 1955. Voter turnout was 82.8%.-Results:Mapai retained its plurality in the Knesset, although its share of the vote dropped by 5.1 and its share of seats dropped from 47 to 40...

, Ben Gurion resumed his dual role as Prime Minister and Minister of Defence. Dayan, who believed in the inevitability of the "Second Round", argued for a pre-emptive attack on Israel's neighbours, particularly Egypt. The two leaders thought war with Egypt could be achieved by provoking an Egyptian response to retaliation raids which could then be used to justify an all out attack. On 23 October 1955, Ben Gurion instructed Dayan to prepare plans to capture Sharm al Sheikh.

On the night of 27 October 1955, an IDF Battalion attacked an Egyptian army post at Kuntilla  (Operation Union/Mivtza Egged), killing 12 Egyptian soldiers. On 2 November, al Sabha, close to the DMZ, was attacked, in Operation Volcano (Mivtza Ha Ga'ash), killing 81 Egyptian soldiers. On 11 December, hoping an attack on Syria would provoke an Egyptian response, Operation Olive Leaves/Sea of Galilee (Mivtza 'Alei Zayit/Kinneret) was launched in which a number of Syrian positions on the Eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee
Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee, also Kinneret, Lake of Gennesaret, or Lake Tiberias , is the largest freshwater lake in Israel, and it is approximately in circumference, about long, and wide. The lake has a total area of , and a maximum depth of approximately 43 m...

 were destroyed. Forty eight Syrian soldiers were killed as well as six civilians, three of whom were women. The Egyptians failed to react.

A Cabinet meeting on 15 December 1955 voted against further provocations and ruled that any retaliation attacks must have full Cabinet approval. The raids ceased for six months. There was one exception: On 5 April 1956, following two earlier incidents along the border with the Gaza Strip in which four Israeli soldiers were killed, the IDF shelled the centre of Gaza City with 120 mm mortars. Fifty-eight civilians were killed, including 15 women and 10 children. It is not clear whether Dayan had Ben Gurion's approval to shell the city.


During September–October 1956, as plans began to mature for the invasion
Suez Crisis
The Suez Crisis, also referred to as the Tripartite Aggression, Suez War was an offensive war fought by France, the United Kingdom, and Israel against Egypt beginning on 29 October 1956. Less than a day after Israel invaded Egypt, Britain and France issued a joint ultimatum to Egypt and Israel,...

 of the Sinai Peninsula, Dayan ordered a series of large-scale cross border raids. On the night of 25 September following a number of incidents including the machine-gunning of large gathering at Ramat Rachel
Ramat Rachel
Ramat Rachel is a kibbutz located south of Jerusalem in Israel, as an enclave within Jerusalem's municipal boundaries. Overlooking Bethlehem and Rachel's Tomb and situated within the Green Line, it falls under the jurisdiction of Mateh Yehuda Regional Council...

 in which four Israelis were killed, and the murder of a girl south-west of Jerusalem, the 890th Battalion launched an attack on the police station at Husan
Husan
Husan is a Palestinian town located north of the Gush Etzion Regional Council, nine kilometers west of Bethlehem, in the Bethlehem Governorate. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Husan had a population of 5,511 in 2007.-Etymology:...

 and nearby Arab Legion
Arab Legion
The Arab Legion was the regular army of Transjordan and then Jordan in the early part of the 20th century.-Creation:...

 positions close to the Armistice lines. Thirty-seven Legionnaires and National Guardsmen were killed as well as two civilians. Nine or ten paratroopers were killed, several in a road accident after the attack.

Following the killing of two workers near Even-Yehuda
Even-Yehuda
Even Yehuda is a town in the central Sharon region of Israel west of Netanya. In 2011, Even Yehuda had a population of 12,000. -History:Even Yehuda is named for Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, one of the leading figures in the revival of the Hebrew language. It was founded in December 1932 by the Bnei...

 Dayan ordered a similar attack, Operation Samaria/Mivtza Shomron, on the police station at Qalqilya. The attack took place on the night of 10 October 1956 and involved several thousand IDF soldiers. During the fighting a paratroop company was surrounded by Jordanian troops and the survivors only escaped under close air-cover from four IAF
Israeli Air Force
The Israeli Air Force is the air force of the State of Israel and the aerial arm of the Israel Defense Forces. It was founded on May 28, 1948, shortly after the Israeli Declaration of Independence...

 aircraft. The Israelis suffered 18 killed and 68 wounded; between seventy and ninety Jordanians were killed. In the aftermath, Dayan was severely criticized by paratroop officers for alleged tactical mistakes. It was the last time the IDF launched a reprisal raid at night.
As Chief of Staff
Ramatkal
The Chief of the General Staff, also known as the Commander-in-Chief of the Israel Defense Forces is the supreme commander and Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces. At any given time, the Chief of Staff is the only active officer holding the IDF's highest rank, Rav Aluf , which is usually...

 of the Israel Defense Forces
Israel Defense Forces
The Israel Defense Forces , commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal , are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force and navy. It is the sole military wing of the Israeli security forces, and has no civilian jurisdiction within Israel...

, Moshe Dayan personally commanded the Israeli forces fighting in the Sinai during the 1956 Suez Crisis
Suez Crisis
The Suez Crisis, also referred to as the Tripartite Aggression, Suez War was an offensive war fought by France, the United Kingdom, and Israel against Egypt beginning on 29 October 1956. Less than a day after Israel invaded Egypt, Britain and France issued a joint ultimatum to Egypt and Israel,...

. It was during Dayan's tenure as Chief of Staff that he delivered his famous eulogy of Ro'i Rutenberg, a young Israeli resident of the kibbutz of Nahal Oz
Nahal Oz
Nahal Oz is a kibbutz in southern Israel. Located in the northwestern part of the Negev desert close to the border with the Gaza Strip and near the development towns of Sderot and Netivot, it falls under the jurisdiction of Sha'ar HaNegev Regional Council. In 2006 it had a population of...

, killed by Egyptian soldiers who ambushed the kibbutz, in 1956.

Political career


In 1959, a year after he retired from the IDF, Dayan joined Mapai
Mapai
Mapai was a left-wing political party in Israel, and was the dominant force in Israeli politics until its merger into the Israeli Labor Party in 1968...

, the leftist party in Israeli politics, then led by David Ben-Gurion
David Ben-Gurion
' was the first Prime Minister of Israel.Ben-Gurion's passion for Zionism, which began early in life, led him to become a major Zionist leader and Executive Head of the World Zionist Organization in 1946...

. Until 1964, he served as the Minister of Agriculture
Agriculture Minister of Israel
The Agriculture Minister of Israel is the political head of the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture and a relatively minor position in the Israeli cabinet. Since 1992 the full title of the position has been the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development , the Development Ministry having been...

. Dayan joined with the group of Ben-Gurion loyalists who defected from Mapai in 1965 to form Rafi. The Prime Minister Levi Eshkol
Levi Eshkol
' served as the third Prime Minister of Israel from 1963 until his death from a heart attack in 1969. He was the first Israeli Prime Minister to die in office.-Biography:...

 disliked Dayan; however, when tensions began to rise in early 1967, Eshkol appointed the charismatic and popular Dayan as Minister of Defense in order to raise public morale and bring Rafi into a unity government.

Six Day War (1967)



Moshe Dayan was covering the Vietnam War
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

 to observe modern warfare up close after his political life. In fact, he was on patrol as an observer with members of the US Marine Corps
United States Marine Corps
The United States Marine Corps is a branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for providing power projection from the sea, using the mobility of the United States Navy to deliver combined-arms task forces rapidly. It is one of seven uniformed services of the United States...

. Although Dayan did not take part in most of the planning before the Six-Day War
Six-Day War
The Six-Day War , also known as the June War, 1967 Arab-Israeli War, or Third Arab-Israeli War, was fought between June 5 and 10, 1967, by Israel and the neighboring states of Egypt , Jordan, and Syria...

 of June 1967, his appointment as defense minister contributed to the Israeli success. He personally oversaw the capture of East Jerusalem during the 5 – 7 June fighting. During the years following the war, Dayan enjoyed enormous popularity in Israel and was widely viewed as a potential Prime Minister. At this time, Dayan was the leader of the hawkish camp within the Labor government, opposing a return to anything like Israel's pre-1967 borders. He once said that he preferred Sharm-al-Sheikh (an Egyptian town on the southern edge of the Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

 overlooking Israel's shipping lane to the Red Sea
Red Sea
The Red Sea is a seawater inlet of the Indian Ocean, lying between Africa and Asia. The connection to the ocean is in the south through the Bab el Mandeb strait and the Gulf of Aden. In the north, there is the Sinai Peninsula, the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Gulf of Suez...

 via the Gulf of Aqaba
Gulf of Aqaba
The Gulf of Aqaba is a large gulf located at the northern tip of the Red Sea. In pre twentieth-century and modern sources it is often named the Gulf of Eilat, as Eilat is its predominant Israeli city ....

) without peace to peace without Sharm-al-Sheikh. He modified these views later in his career and played an important role in the eventual peace agreement between Israel and Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

. In 1997, years after Dayan died, an Israeli journalist, Rami Tal, published conversations he had with Dayan in 1976. In that conversation Dayan claimed that 80 percent of the cross-border clashes between Israel and Syria
Syria
Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

 in the years before the war were a result of Israeli provocation (Dayan was not Defense minister at the time). He admitted:

I know how at least 80 percent of the clashes there started. In my opinion, more than 80 percent, but let's talk about 80 percent. It went this way: We would send a tractor to plough someplace where it wasn't possible to do anything, in the demilitarized area, and knew in advance that the Syrians would start to shoot. If they didn't shoot, we would tell the tractor to advance farther, until in the end the Syrians would get annoyed and shoot. And then we would use artillery and later the air force also, and that's how it was.


Also, later, he stated his regrets:
I made a mistake in allowing the Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 conquest of the Golan Heights. As defense minister I should have stopped it because the Syrians were not threatening us at the time [fourth day of the war].


He also portrayed the desire of the residents in the Kibbutzim beneath the Golan Heights that they be captured as stemming from the desire for their agricultural land and not primarily for security reasons. This description was hotly denied by the Kibbutz leaders (the Hula Valley kibbutzim did not get any land on the Golan).

Dayan's contention was denied by Muky Tsur, a longtime leader of the United Kibbutz Movement who said "For sure there were discussions about going up the Golan Heights or not going up the Golan Heights, but the discussions were about security for the kibbutzim in Galilee," he said. "I think that Dayan himself didn't want to go to the Golan Heights. This is something we've known for many years. But no kibbutz got any land from conquering the Golan Heights. People who went there went on their own. It's cynicism to say the kibbutzim wanted land."

About Dayan's comments, Israeli ambassador to the United States Michael Oren
Michael Oren
Michael B. Oren is an American-born Israeli historian and author and the Israeli ambassador to the United States...

 has said
There is an element of truth to Dayan's claim, but it is important to note that Israel regarded the de-militarized zones in the north as part of their sovereign territory and reserved the right to cultivate them—a right that the Syrians consistently resisted with force. Syria also worked to benefit from the Jordan river before it flowed into Israel, aiming to get use of it as a water source; Syria also actively supported Palestinian resistance movements against Israel. Israel occasionally exploited incidents in the de-militarized zones to strike at the Syrian water diversion project and to punish the Syrians for their support of the Palestinian resistance. Dayan's remarks must also be taken in context of the fact that he was a member of the opposition at the time. His attitude toward the Syrians changed dramatically once he became defense minister. Indeed, on June 8, 1967, Dayan bypassed both the Prime Minister and the Chief of Staff in ordering the Israeli army to attack and capture the Golan.

Yom Kippur War (1973)



After Golda Meir
Golda Meir
Golda Meir ; May 3, 1898 – December 8, 1978) was a teacher, kibbutznik and politician who became the fourth Prime Minister of the State of Israel....

 became Prime Minister in 1969 following the death of Levi Eshkol
Levi Eshkol
' served as the third Prime Minister of Israel from 1963 until his death from a heart attack in 1969. He was the first Israeli Prime Minister to die in office.-Biography:...

, Dayan remained Minister of Defense. He was still in that post when the Yom Kippur War
Yom Kippur War
The Yom Kippur War, Ramadan War or October War , also known as the 1973 Arab-Israeli War and the Fourth Arab-Israeli War, was fought from October 6 to 25, 1973, between Israel and a coalition of Arab states led by Egypt and Syria...

 began catastrophically for Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 on 6 October 1973. As the highest-ranking official responsible for military planning, Dayan may bear part of the responsibility for the Israeli leadership having missed the signs for the upcoming war. In the hours preceding the war, Dayan chose not to order a full mobilization or a preemptive strike against the Egyptians and the Syrians. He assumed that Israel would be able to win easily even if the Arabs attacked and, more importantly, did not want Israel to appear as the aggressor, as it would have undoubtedly cost it the invaluable support of the United States (who would later mount a massive airlift to rearm Israel, a major turning point of the war).

Following the heavy defeats of the first two days, Dayan's views changed radically; he was close to announcing "the downfall of the "Third
The Third Temple
The Third Temple, or Ezekiel's Temple , is a temple architecturally described in the Book of Ezekiel...

 Temple
Temple in Jerusalem
The Temple in Jerusalem or Holy Temple , refers to one of a series of structures which were historically located on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem, the current site of the Dome of the Rock. Historically, these successive temples stood at this location and functioned as the centre of...

" at a news conference, but was forbidden to speak by Meir. Dayan further backed from high level political role, and turned publicly as symbol for Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 independence and hope for a Third Temple to be built.


Dayan suggested options at the beginning of the war, including a plan to withdraw to the Mitleh mountains in Sinai and a complete withdrawal from the Golan Heights in order to carry the battle over the Jordan, abandoning the core strategic principles of Israeli war doctrine, which says that war must be taken into enemy territory as soon as possible. The Chief of Staff, David Elazar
David Elazar
David "Dado" Elazar was the ninth Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces, serving in that capacity from 1972 to 1974. He was forced to resign in the aftermath of the Yom Kippur War.-Early life:...

, objected to these plans and was proved correct. Israel broke through the Egyptian lines on the Sinai front, crossed the Suez canal
Suez Canal
The Suez Canal , also known by the nickname "The Highway to India", is an artificial sea-level waterway in Egypt, connecting the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea. Opened in November 1869 after 10 years of construction work, it allows water transportation between Europe and Asia without navigation...

, and encircled the 3rd Egyptian Army. Israel also counterattacked on the Syrian front, successfully repelling the Jordanian and Iraqi expeditionary forces and shelling the outskirts of Damascus
Damascus
Damascus , commonly known in Syria as Al Sham , and as the City of Jasmine , is the capital and the second largest city of Syria after Aleppo, both are part of the country's 14 governorates. In addition to being one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Damascus is a major...

, ending the war on favorable terms.

Foreign Minister


According to those who knew him, the war deeply depressed Dayan. He went into political eclipse for a time. In 1977, despite having been re-elected to the Knesset
Israeli legislative election, 1977
The Elections for the ninth Knesset were held on 17 May 1977. For the first time in Israeli political history, the right-wing, led by Likud, won the election, ending almost 30 years of rule by the left-wing Alignment and its predecessor, Mapai...

 for the Alignment
Alignment (political party)
The Alignment was an alliance of the major left-wing parties in Israel between the 1960s and 1990s. It was established in 1965 as an alliance of Mapai and Ahdut HaAvoda but was dissolved three years later when the two parties and Rafi formally merged into the Israeli Labor Party...

, he accepted the offer to become Foreign Minister in the new Likud
Likud
Likud is the major center-right political party in Israel. It was founded in 1973 by Menachem Begin in an alliance with several right-wing and liberal parties. Likud's victory in the 1977 elections was a major turning point in the country's political history, marking the first time the left had...

 government led by Menachem Begin
Menachem Begin
' was a politician, founder of Likud and the sixth Prime Minister of the State of Israel. Before independence, he was the leader of the Zionist militant group Irgun, the Revisionist breakaway from the larger Jewish paramilitary organization Haganah. He proclaimed a revolt, on 1 February 1944,...

. He was expelled from the Alignment, as a result and sat as an independent MK. As foreign minister in Begin's government, he was instrumental in drawing up the Camp David Accords
Camp David Accords
The Camp David Accords were signed by Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin on September 17, 1978, following thirteen days of secret negotiations at Camp David. The two framework agreements were signed at the White House, and were witnessed by United States...

, a peace agreement with Egypt. Dayan resigned his post in October 1979, because of a disagreement with Begin over whether the Palestinian territories were an internal Israeli matter (the Camp David treaty included provisions for future negotiations with the Palestinians; Begin, who did not like the idea, did not put Dayan in charge of the negotiating team). In 1981 he founded a new party, Telem
Telem (political party)
Telem , lit. Movement for National Renewal) was a political party in Israel.-Background:Telem was formed on 19 May 1981 during the ninth Knesset by Moshe Dayan and two ex-Likud MKs. Dayan had been elected to the Knesset as an MK for the Alignment, which had lost the election for the first time in...

.

Death and legacy



The Telem party won two seats in the 1981 elections
Israeli legislative election, 1981
Elections for the tenth Knesset were held in Israel on 30 June 1981. Despite last minute polls suggesting a victory for Shimon Peres's Alignment, Menachem Begin's Likud won by just one seat...

, but Dayan died shortly thereafter, in Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv , officially Tel Aviv-Yafo , is the second most populous city in Israel, with a population of 404,400 on a land area of . The city is located on the Israeli Mediterranean coastline in west-central Israel. It is the largest and most populous city in the metropolitan area of Gush Dan, with...

, from a massive heart attack. He had been in ill-health since 1980, after he was diagnosed with colon cancer late that year. He is buried in Nahalal
Nahalal
-External links:** UNESCO* Jewish Agency for Israel*, "Jews made a garden" - aerial photo of Nahalal , and a girl from Girls' Agricultural Training Farm , at Google Books....

 in the moshav (a collective village) where he was raised. Dayan willed his personal belongings to his bodyguard.

In 2005, his eye patch was offered for sale on Ebay
EBay
eBay Inc. is an American internet consumer-to-consumer corporation that manages eBay.com, an online auction and shopping website in which people and businesses buy and sell a broad variety of goods and services worldwide...

 with a starting bid of $75,000 U.S. dollars.

Dayan was a complex character; his opinions were never strictly black and white. He had few close friends; his mental brilliance and charisma
Charisma
The term charisma has two senses: 1) compelling attractiveness or charm that can inspire devotion in others, 2) a divinely conferred power or talent. For some theological usages the term is rendered charism, with a meaning the same as sense 2...

tic manner were combined with cynicism and lack of restraint. Ariel Sharon
Ariel Sharon
Ariel Sharon is an Israeli statesman and retired general, who served as Israel’s 11th Prime Minister. He has been in a permanent vegetative state since suffering a stroke on 4 January 2006....

 noted about Dayan:
He would wake up with a hundred ideas. Of them ninety-five were dangerous; three more were bad; the remaining two, however, were brilliant.


Dayan combined a kibbutznik's secular identity and pragmatism with a deep love and appreciation for the Jewish people and the land of Israel
Land of Israel
The Land of Israel is the Biblical name for the territory roughly corresponding to the area encompassed by the Southern Levant, also known as Canaan and Palestine, Promised Land and Holy Land. The belief that the area is a God-given homeland of the Jewish people is based on the narrative of the...

 --but not a religious identification. In one recollection, having seen rabbi
Rabbi
In Judaism, a rabbi is a teacher of Torah. This title derives from the Hebrew word רבי , meaning "My Master" , which is the way a student would address a master of Torah...

s flocking on the Temple Mount
Temple Mount
The Temple Mount, known in Hebrew as , and in Arabic as the Haram Ash-Sharif , is one of the most important religious sites in the Old City of Jerusalem. It has been used as a religious site for thousands of years...

 shortly after Jerusalem was captured in 1967, he asked, "What is this? Vatican?"

Dayan later ordered the Israeli flag removed from the Dome of the Rock
Dome of the Rock
The Dome of the Rock is a shrine located on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem. The structure has been refurbished many times since its initial completion in 691 CE at the order of Umayyad Caliph Abd al-Malik...

, and gave administrative control of the Temple Mount over to the Waqf
Waqf
A waqf also spelled wakf formally known as wakf-alal-aulad is an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law, typically denoting a building or plot of land for Muslim religious or charitable purposes. The donated assets are held by a charitable trust...

, a Muslim council. Dayan believed that the Temple Mount was more important to Judaism as a historical rather than holy site.

Dayan was an author
Writer
A writer is a person who produces literature, such as novels, short stories, plays, screenplays, poetry, or other literary art. Skilled writers are able to use language to portray ideas and images....

 and an amateur archaeologist, the latter hobby leading to some controversy, as his amassing of historical artifacts, often with the help of his soldiers, seemed to be in breach of a number of laws.

Dayan's habit of pilfering newly discovered archaeological sites, before arrival of the Antiquities Authority and State-authorized archaeologists, once almost cost him his life and left him with a slight, permanent impairment. Shortly after the Six-Day War, Dayan heard of a new archaeological find near Holon, due south of Tel Aviv. Not wanting to arouse suspicion, he entered the dig alone, and started to look for artifacts, when suddenly the entire dig caved in upon him, burying him alive. Only a hand remained visible. Shortly thereafter, a group of playing kids passed and saw a human hand protruding from the caved-in hole in the ground. They managed to dig him out alive, but due to possible oxygen deficiency in his brain, he remained with a speech impairment during the rest of his life, as well as with a partially paralyzed hand. Upon his death, his extensive archaeological collection was sold to the state.

In 2005, Moshe Dayan was voted the 73rd-greatest Israeli of all time, in a poll by the Israeli news website Ynet
Ynet
Ynet is the most popular Israeli news and general content website. It is owned by the same conglomerate that operates Yediot Ahronot, the country's secondleading daily newspaper...

 to determine whom the general public considered the 200 Greatest Israelis.

Published works

  • Diary of the Sinai Campaign, 1967 (paperback reprint: Da Capo Press
    Da Capo Press
    Da Capo Press, is an American publishing company with headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was founded in 1964 as a publisher of music books, as a division of Plenum Publishers. it had additional offices in offices in New York City, Philadelphia and Emeryville, California...

    , September 1991, ISBN 9780306804519)
  • Living with the Bible: A Warrior's Relationship with the Land of His Forebears, Steimatzky's Agency Ltd
    Steimatzky
    Steimatzky , is the oldest and largest bookstore chain in Israel, founded by Yechezkel Steimatzky in 1925.-Early history:The first store opened in 1925 on Jaffa Road in Jerusalem by Yechezkel Steimatzky a Russian-born immigrant from Germany...

    , 1978, ASIN B0021OXHOO1978
  • Story of My Life, William Morrow and Company
    William Morrow and Company
    William Morrow and Company is an American publishing company founded by William Morrow in 1926. The company was acquired by Scott Foresman in 1967, and sold to Hearst Corporation in 1981. It was sold along to the News Corporation in 1999...

    , 1976, ISBN 9780688030766
  • Breakthrough: A Personal Account of the Egypt-Israel Peace Negotiations, Random House
    Random House
    Random House, Inc. is the largest general-interest trade book publisher in the world. It has been owned since 1998 by the German private media corporation Bertelsmann and has become the umbrella brand for Bertelsmann book publishing. Random House also has a movie production arm, Random House Films,...

    , September 1981, ISBN 9780394512259

Further reading

  • Lau-Lavie, Napthali. Moshe Dayan – A Biography, Dodd Mead, 1969, ISBN 9780396059769

External links