The Six-Day War, waged from June 5-10, 1967, would reshape Israel's borders and regional dynamics for the next half-century.
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It seems almost inconceivable today that a war could be fought and won in less than a week. The current Afghan conflict has been running off and on for the time it takes a child to grow up and prepare for high school graduation. Even the combat phase of the first Persian Gulf War, waged by the most militarily capable coalition on Earth, took over a month to complete. And yet, 50 years ago today, Israel achieved a decisive military victory against overwhelming odds over a six-day period in the summer of 1967. Not only did the Jewish state eliminate all immediate threats to its very existence, it secured regional military dominance, something it maintains a half-century later.
The conflict is often portrayed as Israel's ultimate achievement in solidifying its own security, and some consider the victory a prelude to the death of pan-Arabism. Yet both characterizations are often exaggerated. While...