Using tree rings as evidence of forest fires in the Appalachians:
For some time, the United States had had an emergency plan to attack Israel, a
plan updated just prior to the 1967 war, aimed at preventing Israel from
expanding westward, into Sinai, or eastward, into the West Bank.
In May 1967, one of the U.S. commands was charged with the task of removing the
plan from the safe, refreshing it and preparing for an order to go into action.
This unknown aspect of the war was revealed in what was originally a top-secret
study conducted by the Institute for Defense Analyses in Washington.
In February 1968, an institute expert, L. Weinstein, wrote an article called
"Critical Incident No. 14," about the U.S. involvement in the Middle East crisis
of May-June 1967.Only 30 copies of his study were printed for distribution.
Years later the material was declassified and can now be read by everyone,
although details that are liable to give away sources' identities and
operational ideas have remained censored.
The general who oversaw the planning in 1967 was Theodore John ("Ted") Conway,
then 56 and a four-star general, the head of Strike Command.
The basis for the directive was Washington's policy of support for the
existence, independence and territorial integrity of all the states of the
region. This translated into adherence to the Israeli-Arab armistice lines of
1949. The policy was not to allow Egypt, or any combination of Arab states, to
destroy Israel, but also not to allow Israel to expand westward, into Sinai, or
eastward, into the West Bank.
The American pressure in this regard brought the IDF back from El Arish in
Operation Horev in 1949 and from Sinai in 1956. A version of it would appear in
Henry Kissinger's directives after the IDF encircled Egypt's Third Army at the
end of the Yom Kippur War of 1973.
General Earle Wheeler, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, barred the
distribution of the planning concept to subordinate levels. A preliminary paper
was prepared by June 5, the day the war erupted, and became outdated even before
it could be used.
On June 6, when the success of the Israel Air Force was known, and as the
divisions under IDF Generals Israel Tal, Ariel Sharon and Avraham Yoffe advanced
into Sinai, the Joint Chiefs sent McNamara top-secret memorandum No. 315-67,
recommending that the United States not intervene militarily, that it continue
to work through the United Nations and bilateral diplomatic channels, including
consultation with the Soviets, to stop the war, and that logistical support for
all sides be suspended.
The American sigh of relief at the demise of the worst-case scenario - the
danger that Israel would be destroyed - was replaced by the fear that the Arab
defeat had been so crushing that the Soviets would intervene on their behalf, or
at least would reap a diplomatic profit.
Because the United States did not know what Israel was aiming at, despite
declarations by Eshkol and by Defense Minister Moshe Dayan that Israel had no
territorial ambitions, the administration "now felt that it was necessary to
limit [the Israeli] success to reasonable bounds."
Two retired IDF major generals, Israel Tal and Shlomo Gazit, who was then head
of research in Military Intelligence, said recently, upon hearing the secret
plan of the U.S. military, that Israel had no knowledge of this.
The IDF fought the Egyptians, the Jordanians and the Syrians without imagining
that it might find itself confronting the Americans as well, in their desert
Pleased with what you have read?
The Brit-Am enterprise is a good Biblically-based work.
They who assist Brit-Am will be blessed.
Brit-Am depends on contributions alongside purchases of our publications