CLEVELAND, March 23 – The Ohio chapter of Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) and the Cleveland Jewish News Foundation are partnering to host community events commemorating the 50th anniversary of Israel’s Six-Day War. The commemoration will reunite the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers from the iconic photo taken by
David Rubinger, who passed away earlier this month, of three paratroopers at the Western Wall after they had won the battle over Jerusalem.
Rubinger’s photo, “Paratroopers at the Western Wall,” is recognized as the defining image of the Six-Day War, June 5-10, 1967, during which Israel fought against Egypt, Jordan, and Syria. During the war, Israel gained control over Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Sinai Peninsula, and the Golan Heights.
After seeing the famous photo,
Paul Singerman, president of the Cleveland Jewish News Foundation’s board of directors, said he thought it was a “terrific idea” to hold a special commemoration in Cleveland with the three paratroopers.
“One of the foundation’s missions is community education in matters related to Jewish issues,” said Singerman. “Commemorating the Six-Day War is a perfect fit for the foundation.”
The first commemorative event, June 5, at Landerhaven in Mayfield Heights, will include a keynote speech by Dr.
Kenneth W. Stein, a professor of contemporary Middle Eastern history, political science, and Israel studies at Emory University in Atlanta. The three paratroopers from Rubinger’s photo,
Zion Karasenti, Dr.
Yitzhak Yifat, and
Haim Oshri, will be attending to recreate the historic moment and share their heroic stories.
The second event, June 11, at The Lillian and Betty Ratner School in Pepper Pike, will be an informal celebration featuring food, music, and song geared towards families. The three paratroopers will be present at this event as well.
“Our commemoration will stress the importance of the Six-Day War and the sacrifices of IDF soldiers,” said FIDF Ohio Chairman
Irwin Haber. “This was a pivotal moment in history that changed the landscape of Israel and the lives of Jews worldwide.”
FIDF Ohio Director
Lane Schlessel added: “The soldiers of Israel still fight today as they did 50 years ago to protect our Jewish homeland and guarantee our existence. It’s a core pillar of FIDF’s mission to provide educational opportunities for soldiers during and after their IDF service – to ensure bright futures for them and for the State of Israel.”
“Since one of the Cleveland Jewish News Foundation’s pillars is education, it’s natural that proceeds will go toward the education pillar of FIDF in order to help these soldiers,” said Singerman.
Presenting sponsors for the events are Dr.
Lisa Kriwinsky and their family, along with Pediatric Place, an independent pediatric practice in Beachwood. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.
The funds raised at these events will go toward FIDF’s educational programs for IDF soldiers. To purchase tickets for the “Six-Day War Commemoration Dessert Reception” on June 5, or to support FIDF, please visit: