Soviet Premier Nikita Krushchev shakes hands with Egypt’s Nasser
From Joel Rosenberg’s blog article:
How close did Russia come to intervening in the Six Day War against Israel? My interview with CBN News.
“Israelis are celebrating — and Palestinians are mourning — the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War, which set into motion the reunification of Jerusalem, as well as Judea and Samaria (i.e., the “West Bank” of the Jordan River), under Jewish control for the first time in more than 2,000 years. [The Israelis reestablished control of Jerusalem on the night of June 6-7, 1967… but in the Hebrew Calendar Israel uses, the fifty year celebration of Jerusalem Day – the Jubilee – will be May 24, 2017 in our western (Gregorian) calendar.]
The Christian Broadcasting Network asked me to discuss these historic and controversial events with two specific questions in mind:
- How close did the Soviet Union come to actively intervening militarily in the Six Day War on the side of Egypt, Jordan and Syria and against the State of Israel?
- How significant was the war and its aftermath in terms of Biblical prophecy?
By Chris Mitchell, CBN News bureau chief
JERUSALEM, Israel – The 1967 Six-Day War pitted a relatively young Israel against five established Arab armies. One of the world’s superpowers also came dangerously close to entering the war, which led to fears of a potential Armageddon.
June 5, 1967. Prime Minister Levi Eshkol sent a cable to President Lyndon Johnson informing him the war had begun.
“Israel’s existence and integrity have been endangered,” he wrote, adding a request: “Prevent the Soviet Union from exploiting and enlarging the conflict … [at Israel’s] greatest hour of danger.”
“What most people don’t realize is that the actor that was perhaps the most dangerous, but operating sort of behind the scenes, was the Soviet Union,” Middle East expert Joel Rosenberg told CBN News.
While Israel faced the combined might of Arab countries, it was the Soviet Union casting a giant shadow over the war.
“Now June 5, 1967, the morning Eshkol orders Israeli bombers into action and they’re successful, Soviet Premier Kosygin dials the hotline right into the White House and demands to talk to President Johnson,” Rosenberg continued. “Now the hotline was rarely used except in the most extreme crisis. And the message that Kosygin sent heavily implied that if the United States didn’t force Israel back down, that the Soviets were going to take direct military action. And this took the conflict to an entirely different level.”
President Johnson had told Eshkol the U.S. might cut off political and military assistance to Israel in case of a preemptive strike.
“So the Israeli leadership was already taking a huge risk that Johnson would keep his word. Once the Soviets got involved, a dynamic changed. Suddenly the Johnson White House saw the conflict not simply in terms of Israeli Egyptian-Syrian terms but in U.S.-Soviet terms,” Rosenberg explained.
That led Johnson to send the Sixth Fleet steaming toward Israel as a show of support.
Rosenberg believes the fact that the Soviets never got involved was part of the Six-Day War miracle.
“I think it’s one of the untold stories – or rarely told stories – of God’s protection of Israel is the fact that the Soviets seemed to come so close that they were threatening at the to the Americans, to the Israelis directly,” he said. “They were promising their Arab allies that they would do more, and they were actually moving military forces closer and closer to Israel.”
“…So you now have Russian forces, Iranian forces helping Syrian forces just a few miles north of Israel.”
Fifty years since the battle for Jerusalem took place, Rosenberg says Israel and its capital remain on the front lines.
“Jerusalem was reunited 50 years ago, but the battle for Jerusalem remains. It’s a political battle. It’s an economic battle, with people trying to isolate Israel politically around the world,” he said. “People are trying to boycott, divest and sanction Israel in part because Israel has Jerusalem.
“Jerusalem is the flash point. Jerusalem is the epicenter. You know for 4,000 years people have wanted this city and they have fought hard to get it. And so, the fact that Israel controls it today is biblical, it’s prophetic, but it’s also complicated and we need to be praying for the peace of Jerusalem and praying for Israel to be secure,” he concluded.
- Bible prophecy suggests that events in 1967 set the stage for end times prophecy and help determine the generation in which all prophecy will be fulfilled. Most scholars feel it will be in the lifetimes of people who saw Israel recreated in 1948 and Jerusalem united under Israeli control in 1967. Assuming the longest biblical mention of a lifespan or generation – 80 years – we are fast running out of time.
- In the end times the Antichrist will reign from Jerusalem. I suspect this will be an Islamic leader ruling a revived Caliphate. Even Nostradamus repeatedly warned about a new Arab empire occupying Israel and invading half of Europe. Read: Nostradamus and the Islamic Invasion of Europe