Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Indian Heroism in Israel


 Author’s Note

Chapter  1.            Indian Heroic Role in Israel Independence
Chapter  2.            Cultural Ties between India and Israel
Chapter  3.            India’s Heroic Role in Israel’s Independence
Chapter  4.               Centenary Celebrations of Haifa Day in 2018
 Chapter  5.           Speech by Israel Ambassador Alon Ushpiz on
Liberation of Haifa by Indian Soldiers
Chapter  6.   Fallen in the cause of Other Nations
APPENDIX - 1:        Mind Boggling Wars fought by Israelis
Haifa Day Celebrations on 23 September 2013 - Pictorial

Author’s Note
The history of India is largely written as the history of foreign dynasties entrenched in and around Delhi and many great people of India have been reduced to the footnotes. The history taught today is more about imperial and brutal campaigns of the Turks, Afghans, Mughals, Portuguese and British rather than the success stories and resistance movements by the our people against these oppressors. There is the bewildering absence of any history of the Northeast, Dalit and Tribal in our textbooks. The achievements of Indians in foreign lands have been totally ignored. The fact that Indian sacrifice was instrumental in the formation of a few countries is hardly narrated.
The sacrifice of our Jawans in giving birth to other countries should not disappear from the pages of history. Hence I have tried to highlight one such forgotten golden chapter of achievement of Indian soldiers. Indian lancers sent by Maharajas of Jodhpur and Mysore fought an unequal battle on 22 and 23 September 1918 against formidable, well-fortified and well-equipped armies of Turks, Germans and Austrians after the British army sensing heavy loss had withdrawn. The valor, courage and sacrifice of Indian senas from Jodhpur and Mysore paved the way for the independence of a distant land, Israel. Their graves and Memorials have been well maintained by the present Israel government. I was fortunate to visit their graves in the port city of Haifa, Israel in 2013. Although many in Indian army have heard the Haifa Battle, they do not know the significance of that battle in the birth of Israel and hence this book will be useful to them as well. 
I am highly thankful to Dr Elihu Richter, Dr RCA Godbole, Dr Ithamar Theodore, Nissim Moses, Yohan Perry for my visit of Israel. Dr Sadanand Sapre, Mallika Gangakhedkar, Nikunj Sood, Prem Bhattarai, Pramod Kumar Mishra and Umesh Mishra of Bangkok have helped in refining the text. Kashipathi and Avnish Bhatnagar of Vidya Bharati have taken pains to publish this book in the shortest time possible.

Chapter 1:       
Indian Heroic Role in Israel Independence
A Brief Account
Battle of Haifa 22-23 September 1918 One of the Greatest Wars of Human History
A large number of Indian soldiers sent by Jodhpur Maharaja and Mysore Maharaja sacrificed their lives in Israel (West Asia) during First World War. In the process, they defeated the combined forces of Turks, Germans and Austrians and liberated the Israeli port city of Haifa in September 1918. Israel then known as Philistine, was ruled for 402 years by Turkeys Ottoman Empire since 1516 CE.
After this battle, Indian soldiers together with British, Australian and New Zealand soldiers fought a few more battles to liberate entire Israel. More than 900 courageous Indian soldiers died in different battles in Israel. Their graves are preserved and looked after as a mark of respect by the present government of Israel. Their names, bravery and sacrifice are remembered every year on 23 September and included in their school textbooks. Major Dalpat Singh Shekhawat of Jodhpur, who led the Indian assault on the combined armies of Turks, Germans and Austrians, is known as the Hero of Haifa. Even though he died in the battle, his soldiers exhibited exemplary courage and fought bravely to win everlasting fame for Bharat.
This battle is remembered as one of the greatest battles in human history because of certain remarkable facts. The enemies consisting of Turks, Germans and Austrian soldiers were well secured in their territory and were armed with the most modern weapons like cannons, guns and rifles. On the other hand, the Indian soldiers sent by Jodhpur and Mysore Maharajas were cavaliers on horsebacks and foot soldiers. They were equipped only with swords and lances. This is perhaps the only battle in which soldiers with spears and swords defeated an army equipped with modern weapons.
It is also the last incidence in history wherein horse and foot soldiers with spears and swords fought any major battle.
The Battle of Haifa therefore, remains as one of the greatest wars of human history. It is a golden chapter in Indian history, which can inspire every Indian child and youth.
The Nizam of Hyderabad also sent a cavalry unit to help the British army. Its role was to take care of the captured prisoners of war.
Brief History of the Jewish Diaspora
Israel is an ancient country in West Asia. Its people are called the Jews and the language they speak is called Hebrew. Israel was attacked and captured by Assyrians in the 8th century BCE (740 722 BCE) and by Babylonians in 6th century BCE (587 BCE). The Jews were once again dispersed by Roman Empire in 72 CE to many parts of Europe and Africa.
Throughout much of Jewish history, most Jews lived in the Diaspora- in exile facing slavery, massacres and mass murders by way of inhuman torture, inquisition, incarceration, gas chambers and concentration camps. They were also subjected to racial and religious discriminations. Their plight and torture can be compared only with 20 million Indians called Roma or Sintis. They were dispersed from North West India (mainly Rajasthan, Punjab and Sind) by the invading Arabs, from 712 AD onwards to slave markets in West Asia from where they escaped to Europe.
Whenever the Jews, the people of Israel, were expelled from their country by the invaders, many of them took refuge in Bharat mainly in Cochin (Kerala) and Alibag (Maharashtra). They lived in Bharat for more than 2500 years and left for their homeland Israel, after it was formed in 1948. It is only in Bharat that the Jews lived for those 2,500 years with dignity, honor and pride and without fear of any discrimination. Hindu kings built temples (Synagogues) and residential houses for them. Hindus, often at the risk of their own lives, protected the Jews from the persecution and proselytizing efforts of the Portuguese invaders from 16th century onwards and the forces of Tippu Sultan in 18th century. The hospitality, sacrifice and noble acts of Indians are unheard of in the rest of the Jewish Diaspora.
Israel Under Ottoman Muslim Rule
Different foreign rulers governed Israel for almost 2,000 years. In the medieval period Israel had come under the Turkish Ottoman Muslim rule for 400 years since 1516 CE. During this long period, the Jews were ill-treated and subjected to inhuman hardships. They were transported as slaves to different parts of Europe. They therefore, yearned to see their fatherland liberated and settle there to lead a life of dignity. 
Significance of Liberation of Haifa by Indian Soldiers
For the Jews who lived outside their fatherland, the liberation of Haifa from the Ottoman Turks by the Indian soldiers on 23 September 1918 had a great significance.
When the Jews in Europe and elsewhere learnt of the liberation of Haifa, they were overwhelmed with joy and started arriving in Haifa from 1919 onwards. They settled down in Israel, although World War-I was still in progress in West Asia. The Jews number swelled and eventually they could establish the modern state of Israel in 1948.
Valor of Indian Soldiers Remembered
Every year on September 23, the Mayor and the people of Haifa, along with the Indian embassy in Israel, gather to pay respects to the brave Indian soldiers who made their supreme sacrifice. In India too every year on September 23, the Indian Army commemorates "Haifa Day".  Indo Israel Friendship Forum (IIFF, Delhi) and Vishwa Adhyayan Kendra (VAK, Mumbai) have been celebrating Haifa Day since 2012 in South Africa, Australia, Hong Kong and over 100 places in India. This includes Haifa Day celebrations in the Jewish synagogues of Delhi, Ahmedabad and Thane. The celebrations are also held at Teen Murti Chowk, Delhi and several schools in Rajasthan and Karnataka.
Indian Lancers in the Battle of Haifa

Chapter – 2:
Cultural Ties between India and Israel
History of Jews in India
Judaism is one of the first foreign religions to arrive in India. The Jews arrived as asylum-seekers during the Assyrian attack, the Babylonian attack and after the destruction of the their Temple in 72 C.E. Unlike many parts of the world, Jews have historically lived in India without any instances of anti-Semitism from the local majority populace, the Hindus.
“… while most of the others (Jews) came to Israel driven by persecution, discrimination, murder and other attempts at total genocide, the Jews of India came because of their desire to participate in the building of the Third Jewish Commonwealth…….. Throughout their long sojourn in India, nowhere at no time were they subjected to intolerance, discrimination or persecution”. Indian Jews in Israel, edited and published by Reuven Dafai, Consul, on behalf of the Consulate of Israel, 50 Pedder Road, Cumballa Hill, Bombay. India.
Jew’s Contributions in India
The Jewish Community has contributed significantly to India’s development. Bank of India, Bombay University Library, Mumbai Sassoon Dock, Gateway of India, Mumbai zoo called Rani Baug, Mumbai Albert Museum, Sassoon High School, the School for Deaf and Sassoon Hospital in Pune are a few of their lasting contributions. Numerous synagogues built by Jews in several parts of India are noted for their architectural beauty.
Lt Gen JFR Jacob, Vice-admiral Benjamin Samson Killekar, philanthropists David Sassoon and his son Sir Albert Sassoon, Internationally acclaimed sculptor Padma Bhushan Anish Kapoor, poet and writer Padmashri Nissim Ezekiel, Bharata Natyam exponent and Sanskrit scholar Padmashri Leela Samson, Sahitya Akademy Award winner Esther David and film actors Sulochana, Nadira and David Cheulkar have excelled in different fields. 
Indian Jews in Israel
There are about 80,000 Indian Jews in Israel. They migrated after the modern state of Israel was formed in 1948. The Indian Jews went to Israel mainly because of their religious affiliation and hopes for a better economic life and not because they faced any form of discrimination in India.
The Indian migrants essentially belong to four groups -- The Bene-Israel of Maharashtra, the Cochin Jews, the Baghdadi Jews and the Bnei Menashe of Mizoram. Initially the Indian Jews faced much racial discrimination in Israel from the white European Jews. Some were even deported back to India. Others were placed in peripheral towns and not in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. They lacked economic and social support system. They had to struggle in the small development towns and agricultural settlements to establish themselves in Israel. The Cochin Jews were put into agricultural settlements in the deserts of Israel. They, by their hard work, have become very successful and wealthy. The Maharashtrian Bene-Israel was on the margins of society for quite sometime. This was not the case in India, where they played a prominent part - Nissim Ezekiel was awarded the Padma Shri and Benjamin Samson Killekar (PVSM) rose to the rank of Vice-Admiral in Indian Navy.

Dimona, A Little India within Israel
The Israeli city of Dimona, is home to 7,500-strong Indian Jewish community. Also known as “mini-India”, Dimona lies in the Negev desert, some 35 kilometres west of the Dead Sea, in the southern District of Israel.
In Dimona, the Indians work in industrial workplaces like chemical plants, high-tech companies and textile shops. Women in typical Maharashtrian attire, shops selling Indian spices, vegetables, video cassettes, Hindi film magazines, and mannequins wearing salwaar kameez suits, are usual sights on the streets of Dimona today.
Marathi can be heard everywhere, and even the younger generation is familiar with words like ‘Sonpapdi’, ‘Gulab Jamun’, ‘papri chaat’ and ‘bhelpuri’, with several shops selling these very Indians delicacies.
In efforts to keep the new generation connected with their Indian heritage, community leaders have even created a special section in the central municipal library in Dimona, and the stocks have been rapidly growing with community members contributing books following their trips to India. Also prominently visible is the cricket ground at the entrance of the city where a lot of youngsters attend regular coaching classes. The Cultural Center in Dimona often organizes plays based on Hindi films
Cultural Ties
A senior RSS member, Shri Narayan Hari Palkar’s book “Chhala-kadun Bala-kade” “छळा कडून बळा कडे" (From slavery to Strength) has been well received and read, both by Indians and Indian Jews. When Bene Israel from Maharashtra went to Israel, they formed a street in Palkar’s name in their makeshift residential area.
Indo Israel Relations in Modern Times
It can be safely said that most Indians admire Israel and India is the most pro-Israel country in the world. During Indo-Pak Kargil conflict in 1999 USA and International community pressurized Israel not to help India with war material. Yet Israel proved to be an important and reliable partner during the conflict by quickly providing India with necessary mortar ammunition and apparently also with laser-guided missiles for its fighter jets.
Today, India is the second-largest Asian economic partner of Israel. India is also the largest customer of Israeli military equipment and Israel is the second-largest military partner of India after the Russian Federation. Military and strategic ties between the two nations extend to joint military training and space technology. Israel did not condemn India's 1998 Pokhran-II nuclear tests. Israel's President Ezer Weizman in 1997 and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in 2003 visited India. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu in New York in 2014.
More than 40,000 Israelis, mostly youth, after finishing their military service, visit India annually. Many Israelis visit the Himalayas, Old Manali and the villages surrounding Dharamsala. Many shops, restaurants and public transport vehicles in the Kullu Valley sport Hebrew signs. Likewise the number of tourists from India visiting Israel is also steadily on the rise and has crossed 20,000. 
Haifa Day Celebrations & other Interactions
IIFF has been celebrating Haifa day since 2012. In 2015 Haifa Day was celebrated in more than hundred places around the world. IIFF and Sewa International have been interacting with Israeli youth volunteers visiting India. These volunteers have contributed towards the betterment of education, health and sports of rural Indian children in Maharashtra.
Visits to Israel:      Shri Ravi Kumar, International Joint Coordinator of Hindu Swayamsewak Sangh and a member of IIFF, visited Israel in June 2013. He met many professors and students in the universities of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa. He also paid visits to the graves and Memorials of Indian soldiers. He met many Indian Jews. Shri Paresh Pathak, another member of IIFF, has visited Israel several times for strengthening the ties between the two nations. IIFF plans to lead a team of prominent Indians to visit Israel during the ensuing Centenary Celebrations of Haifa Day in 2018.
Indian Jews in Israel / in Mumbai

Chapter 3:
Indias Heroic Role in Israels Independence
The Larger Story
Battle of Haifa 22-23 September 1918 one of the greatest wars in human history
Haifa is an important port city of Israel (West Asia). Israel, nee Philistine was ruled by Turkish Ottoman Empire for 400 years from 1516 CE. During the First World War (July 1914 – Nov 1918) several Indian soldiers were sent by Jodhpur Maharaja, Mysore Maharaja and the Nizam of Hyderabad to assist the British army to liberate Israel. The 15th Imperial Service Cavalry Brigade was a special unit formed by the regiments of Lancers from the princely states of Mysore and Jodhpur. Many of them sacrificed their lives during the battle. The unit sent by the Nizam of Hyderabad was given the task of managing the Prisoners of War.
The enemy positions were well fortified and they fought with the most modern weapons including cannons and guns. Indian soldiers, however, fought merely with swords and lances on horsebacks. Yet it is to the credit of Indian valor that our horse and foot soldiers (Ashva and Pada Sainiks) could defeat the enemies in their own territory. The Battle of Haifa therefore, remains as one of the greatest wars of human history. It is a golden chapter in Indian history that can inspire every Indian child and youth.
The 15th Imperial Service Cavalry Brigade liberated the port city of Haifa on 23 September 1918 following dashing cavalry action. This was the last great cavalry campaign in the world history. The Indian troops exhibited exemplary skills and bravery in a successful cavalry charge. Thus ended Israels 402 years of oppression under the Ottoman rule. This remains the only known incident in military history when a cavalry on the gallop captured a fortified town.
Jewish Diaspora
The people of Israel are called the Jews. They were expelled from their fatherland Israel, first by the Assyrians in 733 BCE and then by the Babylonians in 597 BCE. Later, the Romans captured Israel in the First Century CE. They destroyed the Jewish Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem. They then forcefully dispersed the Jews all over the Roman Empire in Europe and Africa in 72 CE.
Throughout much of Jewish history, most Jews lived in the Diaspora in exile, facing slavery, massacres and mass murders by way of inhuman torture, inquisition, incarceration, gas chambers and concentration camps. They also faced racial and religious discriminations. Their plight, torture and genocide can be compared with the sufferings of a section of 20 million Indians who were dispersed from North West India long ago. These Indians called Roma or Sintis, hailing mainly from Rajasthan, Punjab and Sind, were enslaved by the invading Arabs, Turks and Afghans from 712 AD onwards. They were sold in the slave markets of Baghdad and Cairo in West Asia, from where they later fled to Europe.
India the only Paradise for Jews
Beginning from 7th century BCE, many Jews took refuge in Cochin, Kerala and Alibag, Maharashtra on the western coast of India. The Jews lived in India safely and peacefully for more than 2,000 years and left for their homeland only after Israel was formed in 1948 CE.
It is only in Bharat (India) that the Jews lived for over 2,500 years with dignity, honor and pride and without any fear of discrimination. Many Hindu kings built Synagogues (Jewish temples) and residential houses for them. Hindus, often at the risk of their own lives, protected the Jews from the persecution and proselytizing efforts of the Portuguese invaders from 16th century onwards and the forces of Tippu Sultan in 18th century. The hospitality, sacrifice and noble acts of Indians are unheard of in the rest of the Jewish Diaspora. 
Zionism & Balfour Declaration
Since the past 2,000 years Jews have been dreaming of returning to their fatherland and reconstruct their temple.
The possibility of a Jewish homeland in Palestine had been a goal of Zionist organization since the late 19th century. In 1896, Theodor Herzl, a Jewish journalist living in Austria-Hungary, published Der Judenstaat (The State of the Jews). He asserted that the only solution to the "Jewish Question" in Europe, including growing anti-Semitism, was through the establishment of a state for the Jews. A year later, Herzl founded the Zionist Organization (ZO). The ZO at its first congress, called for the establishment of a home for the Jewish people in Palestine secured under public law through -
·         promotion of Jewish settlement there,
·         the organization of Jews in the Diaspora,
·         the strengthening of Jewish feeling and consciousness, and
·         preparatory steps to attain necessary governmental grants.

Balfour Declaration November 1917
During the first meeting between Chaim Weizmann, a prominent British Jew and British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour in 1906, Balfour asked what Weizmann's objections were to the idea of a Jewish homeland in Uganda rather than in Palestine. According to Weizmann's memoir, the conversation went as follows:
"Mr. Balfour, supposing I was to offer you Paris instead of London, would you take it?" He sat up, looked at me, and answered: "But Dr. Weizmann, we have London." "That is true," I said, "but we had Jerusalem when London was a marsh." He said two things, which I remember vividly. The first was: "Are there many Jews who think like you?" I answered: "I believe I speak the minds of millions of Jews whom you will never see and who cannot speak for themselves." To this he said: "If that is so, you will one day be a force."
Later the British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour stated in the Balfour Declaration of November 1917: His Majesty's government view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavors to facilitate the achievement of this object..
Indian Soldiers in World War I and II
The Indian army fought in every major sphere of operation in Europe, Africa and Asia during World War I and II. According to the records of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, 13,02,394 (more than 13 lacs or 1.3 million) Indian soldiers fought in World War I. As many as 1,21,598 Indian soldiers were the casualties of the war, including 53,486 dead, 64,350 wounded and 3,762 missing or imprisoned as on Dec 31, 1919. The campaigns in World War-II cost the lives of 36,000 Indian servicemen, while another 34,354 were wounded and 67,340 became prisoners of war.
During World War I, a force of nearly 150,000 Indians saw action in what is modern-day Egypt and Israel. They played a major part in the Palestine campaign resulting in the fall of the Ottoman forces. To liberate Israel, the Indian soldiers fought in the Third Battle of Gaza, the Battle of Mughar Ridge of Jerusalem and the Battle of Megiddo.
The Jodhpur Lancers and the Mysore Lancers, which were Imperial Service Troops during World War I, fought as a part of the Allied forces during the Palestine campaign of the war. They played a key role in the liberation of Haifa, the port city of Israel.
Over 900 Indian soldiers died while liberating Israel from the Ottoman Turks who were supported actively by German and Austrian troops. Cemeteries and War Memorials of Indian soldiers are well maintained in Israel at Haifa, Jerusalem, Ramleh and Khayat Beach. Several Indian soldiers also died in the fighting that erupted across Israel during World War II.
Field-Marshal Sir Claude Auchinleck, Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from 1942, asserted that the British "couldn't have come through both wars [World War I and II] if they hadn't had the Indian Army.
Importance of Capturing Haifa
Haifa is a port city of Israel, then known as Palestine. The Turk Ottomans occupied it for 402 years since 1516 CE and used the harbor for movement of all their supplies.
In order to keep his forces moving, it was vital to British Gen. Allenby's 'Megiddo' plan that he acquire Haifa with its harbor and railhead. Without Haifa and lack of viable roads meant that it would be impossible for him to keep his army re-supplied. Therefore Gen. Allenby felt that the town should be occupied without delay, so that the harbour could be swept for mines and the landing of stores could be taken in hand.

Battle on September 21 and 22, 1918
A force of 700 Turks from the garrison of Haifa attempted to get to Tiberias, but at 01:30 hrs on the midnight of 21/ 22 September1918 it reached the outposts of the 13th Cavalry Brigade and was attacked in moonlight by the 18th Lancers of the British army.  A large number of the Turks were killed, and 311 were captured together with 4 machine guns.
The next air reconnaissance of Haifa seemed to indicate that the town was evacuated. At 13:30 hrs on 22nd Sept, a detachment of Light Armoured Cars under Brig Gen A. D'A. King advanced along the Nazareth road to occupy Haifa. Before the town was reached, however, they found that the road was barricaded. At this point they were shelled by the Turks from the slopes of Mount Carmel and subjected to machine gun fire. The column withdrew with slight casualties.
Reaction of the Indian Soldiers
The two cavalry units sent by the Maharajas of Jodhpur and Mysore were not happy with the withdrawal of the troops. Major Dalpat Singh Shekhawat, the leader of the cavalry units had a vision in which Devi Mata reprimanded him for his cowardly act of withdrawal. She reminded him that the Indian Maharajas and the people of India would feel ashamed to hear that their soldiers withdrew from the battlefield. He shared the dream with his fellow troops and they too agreed that as true Indian soldiers, they would like to die on the battlefront rather than to return to India carrying the scar of withdrawal. They conveyed this to the British officers. The British officers tried to explain that the enemies were too strong and well fortified. But seeing the determination of the Maharajas forces gave them permission to attack the Turks.
Battle of Haifa on 23 September 1918
Indian Heroism in the Liberation of Israel in 1918
The Cavalry Brigade of Indian horsemen, sent by Jodhpur and Mysore Maharajas and armed with only spears and swords, commenced their march to Haifa at 05:00 hours on 23rd September. Their route was along the foot of the Mount Carmel range and confined to a strip by the boggy ground along the River Kishon and its tributary streams. This left little room for the cavalry to manoeuvre. As the 15th Cavalry Brigade approached Haifa at 10:15 hours, they came under fire from 77mm guns on Mount Carmel. The city of Haifa was well fortified with artillery guns on Mount Carmel by the Turks supported by the German and Austrian forces.
A squadron of the Mysore Lancers (supported by a squadron of Sherwood Rangers) had climbed over Mount Carmel from the south. They captured two naval guns on the ridge of the Carmel after taking the enemies by surprise. They also made a gallant charge against the fire of the enemy's machine guns.
At 14:00 hours the Jodhpur Lancers supported by 'B' Battery H.A.C., attacked Haifa. Despite encountering strong resistance, the lancers made a brilliant charge in the face of the enemy's machine guns.
By 15:00 hours the Indian horsemen captured Haifa from the Ottomans after overrunning their positions.
The action of the Indian troops has been vividly recorded in the Official History of the War - Military operation Egypt and Palestine (volume 2): "No more remarkable cavalry action of its scale was fought in the whole course of the campaign. Machine gun bullets over and over again failed to stop the galloping horses even though many of them succumbed afterwards to their injuries". This remains the only known incident in military history when cavalry on the gallop captured a fortified town.

In his 'History of the British Cavalry', the Marquess of Anglesey concludes his description of this action thus:
By 3 p.m. the battle was over and victory complete. A vital new supply base had fallen into British hands. Four days later, the landing of supplies started. Without a doubt this was the most successful mounted action of its scale in the course of the campaign. It was won by a weak brigade of only two regiments, with a single 12-pounder battery pitted against about 1,000 well-armed troops. The Turks were skillfully deployed and occupied a naturally formidable defensive position. There was an impassable river on one side of a narrow pass and a steep hill on the other. But the speed and daring, dash and boldness of the two Indian Imperial Service regiments, in conjunction with the skillful flanking movements devised by Lieutenant-Colonel Holden, the senior Special Service Officer, were what made the action such a success. The speed and good order demonstrated by the leading squadron of the Jodhporeans and Mysoreans when it was forced to change direction under heavy fire, were other vital ingredients. This was almost certainly the only occasion in world history when a fortified town was captured by cavalry at the gallop."
After street fighting, the town was captured at about 15:00 hours with 1,352 prisoners, 17 guns and 11 machine guns being taken; not without cost however. In the main text of his dispatch of 31st October 1918, General Allenby particularly mentioned: "Whilst the Mysore Lancers were clearing the rocky slopes of Mount Carmel, the Jodhpur Lancers charged through the defile, and riding over the enemy's machine guns, galloped into the town, where a number of Turks were speared in the streets. Colonel Thakur Dalpat Singh, M.C., fell gallantly leading the charge."
For the Jews who lived outside their fatherland for over 2,000 years, the liberation of Haifa from the stronghold of Ottoman Turks by the Indian soldiers has a great significance.
The Jews in Europe and elsewhere welcomed the news with great joy amid revelries, celebrations and festivities. They began arriving in Haifa in large numbers from 1919 onwards. They started settling down in Israel, even though the World War was in progress. The Jews number swelled and eventually paved the way for the modern state of Israel in 1948.
Link between Bahai Faith and Indian Lancers at Haifa
One of the residents of Haifa in 1918 was 'Abdu'l-Baha, the son of the Founder of the Baha'i Faith and designated by Him as His successor. The commander of the Turkish forces in Syria and Palestine, Jamal Pasha, had threatened to crucify 'Abdu'l-Baha and destroy the Baha'i holy places in Haifa and nearby city, Acre. With the liberation of Haifa by the Indian soldiers, the threat to 'Abdu'l-Baha's life was lifted.
This link between the Indian Lancers and the life of 'Abdu'l-Baha first came to light in February 2000 when the architect of the Baha'i House of Worship in Delhi, Fariborz Sahba, met with the then Union Minister for External Affairs, the Honorable Jaswant Singh. Mr. Singh's father was a member of the Jodhpur Lancers and fought under General Allenby.
Tribute to Major Thakur Dalpat Singh, the Hero of Haifa
The Jodhpur Lancers and the Mysore Lancers, which were Indian Imperial Service Troops during World War I, fought as a part of the Allied forces during the Palestine campaign. Their role in the liberation of Haifa is an inspiration for all, for ages to come.
Marwar in Rajasthan, the land of sand dunes, has always been the cradle of heroes where numerous chivalrous persons were nursed. Thus this land became the nursery of brave and gallant people. One paladin nursed in this cradle was a military hero late Major Dalpat Singh Shekhawat, known in the annals of history as Haifa Hero.
Maj Dalpat Singh Shekhawat was born and brought up in Jodhpur. His father, Col Hari
Singh Shekhawat was a famous polo player. Under his guidance, Dalpat Singh grew and became an Army officer. He received his `King Commission' in 1912. During World War I, Haifa (port city of Israel) was a stronghold of the Turks. Major Shekhawat was given the task of capturing Haifa from the enemies. By showing his military skill, tactics and leadership in the battle, he succeeded in his mission and won Haifa. However, he became a martyr while completing his task. Haifa victory was a great achievement of Major Dalpat Singh and the British Government honored him with 'Military Cross' in the battlefield, which at that time was the highest military award bestowed on Indian soldiers (equivalent to Paramveer Chakra of today).
Col Harvey, a British Army officer lamented on the death of such a heroic personality. In his words, "His death is a loss not only to all Jodhpuris, but to India and the whole of the `British Empire'. The British Government eulogized his heroic deed and adored him as Hero of Haifa.
The Government of Marwar built `Dalpat Memorial Hall' in the premises of Pratap School in his memory. Maharaja Shri Umed Singh got his silver replica prepared, which is now a piece of glory for 61 Cavalry at Jaipur.
Major Dalpat Singh's valor has been depicted in the literature of Rajasthan. A great poet of Marwar, Shri Kishore Daan Baarath has written many poems in his memory named `Veer Vilas' and Dalpat Raso in Rajasthani language. The British Government appreciated the supreme sacrifice of Major Dalpat Singh. It got made his statue with two other First World War heroes' statues by an architect of London, Leonard Jennings in 1922. These statues were placed side by side on a monolith pillar in New Delhi. This place is called Teen Murty Chowk.
Indo-Israel Friendship Forum (IIFF) demands that this chowk be renamed Teen Murty Haifa Chowk.
The 83rd death anniversary of late Major Dalpat Singh Shekhawat was celebrated at his native place, Jodhpur. At a meeting held on this occasion the senior officers, of Indian Army and civil administration recalled the supreme sacrifice of this Haifa Hero.
Other Brave men of Haifa War
Captain Anop Singh and 2nd Lt Sagat Singh were also awarded the Military Cross (MC). Captain Bahadur Aman Singh Jodha and Dafadar Jor Singh were awarded the Indian Order of Merit (IOM) in recognition of their bravery in this battle. Military Cross was the highest gallantry award of that time, which an Indian soldier could receive at the hands of the British crown. This award is equivalent to today's Param Vir Chakra awarded by the President of India.
Lt General Sir Pratap Singh had accompanied his Jodhpur Lancers on their 70 mile ride to Nazareth during the night and day journey. Just short of 73 years old, the faithful warrior was, in Field Marshal Allenby's words "quite knocked up." He also had a fever. Allenby ordered him to rest for a few days.  Otherwise the old war-horse would no doubt have joined his lancers in their action at Haifa. This has been described by an anonymous author of the book Through Palestine with the 20th Machine Gun Squadron.
Captain Bir Singh Rathore (as told by his Grandson): He was the eldest brother of Shri Mool Singhji I.A.S, He was a dynamic and handsome personality with 7 ft. height. He was Captain in former Jodhpur Lancers (Jodhpur Sardar Risala). He fought many famous battles during World War I. He was one of the main warriors of the famous 1918 Haifa war.
His bravery and perfect command over machine gun force contributed significantly to the victory of Haifa war. He fought daringly and killed many enemy soldiers. He was awarded for this war. This victory is so famous and important that Haifa war day is celebrated every year with honor by Indian army at 61st cavalry head quarter in Jaipur.
During one such celebration, the Chief of Indian Army was the Guest of Honor. Upon knowing that Capt. Bir Singh the famous warrior of Haifa war was still alive, he invited him in the celebration and accorded him full military honor and salute. Capt Bir Singh gave a speech on Haifa which was broadcast by All India Radio and BBC London. He was also decorated by the President of India.
In another battle in Afghanistan, Capt. Bir Singh ji was in command of one artillery unit. He defeated the enemies, captured prominent posts and forced the enemies to run away. His army unit celebrated their victory by drinking and dancing. Capt. Bir Singh ji being a strict vegetarian & teetotaler (non-drinker), he went alone to a nearby hilltop. The retreating enemy army got wind of the Indian armys celebration. So they returned with additional forces to recapture this important post. Capt Bir Singh ji noticed the movement of the enemy army in the bushes. He called out to his soldiers but they could not hear him.  Capt. Bir Singh therefore, took off his turban from his head, tied a stone to it and began rotating it above his head. Some of his army men, noticing this unusual act, got alerted. They positioned their guns in readiness for a fight. Capt. Bir Singh ji also joined them. The enemy was caught unaware totally and suffered heavy loss. The Indians won a very big victory mainly due to Capt. Bir Singh jis alertness. He was awarded for this battle. Indian Army gave full military honor to Capt. Bir Singh ji upon his death.
Indian Republic’s 61st Cavalry Regiment
India and her army have not forgotten their heroes of the Great War. The three cavalries belonging to the princely states of Jodhpur, Mysore and Hyderabad, which liberated Haifa, have been combined to form one single Indian Republic's 61st Cavalry Regiment. This Cavalry Regiment commemorates 23rd September as Haifa Day every year. [see Tributes to 'Haifa Hero' and http://news.bahai.org/story/69]

Indian soldiers lauded in Israeli textbooks for freeing Haifa city

While remaining unknown in their own country, some Indian soldiers are slated to become household names in Haifa in northern Israel. Their contribution in liberating this city in 1918, would figure in the history textbooks taught at schools in Israel. The municipality of Haifa has gone ahead with its decision to immortalize the sacrifices made by Indian soldiers. The stories of the valiant efforts of Indian soldiers would be included in the school curricula as part of the history textbooks. "The move is a part of Haifa municipalitys efforts to preserve the city's history and heritage," Hedva Almog, deputy Mayor of Haifa, told the people who had gathered to pay their respects to the Indian martyred soldiers.
Haifa Historical Society has done extensive research on the role of the Indian army. As per its findings, a large number of Indian soldiers sacrificed their lives in this region during World War I and nearly 900 are cremated or buried in cemeteries across Israel.
Other Tributes
Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Nirmal Verma, in October 2009, visited the memorial of fallen Indian soldiers in Israel and paid tributes by laying a wreath. He was joined at the ceremony by his Israeli counterpart Eliezer Marom.
On September 23, 2010, Colonel M S Jodha of the Indian Army journeyed to Haifa in Israel, to lay a wreath at the special war memorial that honours his grandfather, Captain Bahadur Aman Singh Jodha, his regiment and other co-regiments.
A task force of the Indian Navy comprising of four ships paid a goodwill visit to Haifa Port in August 2012.  During the visit, the Fleet Commander paid respects at the Memorial in Haifa for the Indian soldiers.
Vishwa Adhyayan Kendra, Mumbai celebrated Haifa Day on 23 Sept 2012 by arranging a joint Hindu Jew Dialogue session at Synagogue in Thane, Mumbai.
Residents of the Israeli city also celebrate Haifa Day the same day, with a series of cultural programs during the week.
Embassy of India, Tel Aviv, Israel, has brought out a book Memorials of Indian Soldiers in Israel. The book has a foreword by Navtej Sarna, Ambassador of India in Israel. The Battle of Haifa is vividly described in this book.
Indian Embassy in Israel celebrated India Memorial Day at Haifa on 1 Oct 2013.  Haifa Day was also celebrated in Thane, Delhi, Jodhpur, Jaipur, Durban, New York, Sydney, Israel (Haifa, Jerusalem, Ramleh and Tel Aviv) around 23 Sept 2013

Chapter -4:
Centenary Celebrations of Haifa Day in 2018
Year 2018 will mark the centenary of the liberation of Haifa, which paved the way for the subsequent independence of the modern state of Israel.
Speaking on the occasion of Haifa Day celebrations in September 2012, Hedva Almog, deputy Mayor of Haifa, stated that the municipality is planning big centenary celebrations to commemorate the event in 2018. She called upon India to join hands in making the celebrations a success. Charge de Affaires at the Indian Mission in Tel Aviv, Madam Vani Rao, reacted positively to the request.
80,000 Jews from India migrated to Israel after Israels Independence in 1948. They are today very successful in every field as engineers, professionals, agriculturists etc.  Many of them still speak Indian languages Marathi, Malayalam and Gujarati. They value their Indian heritage highly. They proudly say: Israel is our Fatherland and India is our Motherland and Israel is in our blood but India is in our Heart.
Indian Jews in Israel, USA and around the world in cooperation with Indo Israel Friendship Forum (IIFF), Vishwa Adhyayan Kendra (VAK), Mumbai and International Center for Cultural Studies (ICCS), USA are planning to commemorate the Centenary of Haifa Day in a grand fitting manner. Many prominent personalities including Minister Gen VK Singh, Members of Parliament and Bene Israel have shown keen interest in participating in this historic event.

Chapter – 5:
Speech by Israel Ambassador Alon Ushpiz on Liberation of Haifa by Indian Soldiers
Israel Ambassador in New Delhi, India, Alon Ushpiz's Speech on Haifa Day Celebrations on 23rd September 2013 at Judah Hyam Synagogue, Delhi.
Mr. Rajesh Gogna, Secretary General of HRDI, Mr. Jaswant Singh, General Jacob,
Ladies and gentlemen, dear guests,
A hidden link connects two places, thousands of miles from each other. One is in the downtown of the city in which I was born, in the northern part of Israel - Haifa. The other one, a few minutes drive from where we are assembled today - The Teen Murti Memorial, just outside of the Teen Murti Bhavan (in Delhi).
Many do not know the full story of the brave soldiers who had freed the city of Haifa and later the Middle East from the rule of the Ottoman Empire on this day, 95 years ago.
Along Jaffa Street in the downtown of Haifa (Israel), not far away from the beach in which you can hear nowadays the voices of playing children, lie two cemeteries for the soldiers who fought bravely for the liberation of the city from 400 years of Ottoman control. The Haifa Indian Cemetery and the Haifa War Cemetery pay homage to the many lives of Indian, British, Australian and New Zealand soldiers that died in the First World War in battles against the Ottomans and especially in the battle of Haifa - 354 brave men including 47 Indians.
The heroism, tenacity and cavalry skills of the Mysore and Jodhpur Lancers that took control of the City from the Turks on the 23rd of September 1918, proved to be a decisive factor in the victory over the Ottoman Empire. The historical battle of Haifa paved the way to the victory of the British Army and 30 years later - to the creation of the State of Israel.
Close to 900 Indian soldiers are buried in 7 cemeteries in Israel, from Jerusalem to Ramleh to Haifa, demonstrating the major sacrifice that was made, and act as an immortal testimonial for their heroism.
The connection, ladies and gentlemen, between the Teen Murti Memorial and the cemetery in Haifa goes way beyond honoring those who gave their lives to ensure ours. It is also an expression of a bond between two independent nations that were born thousands of years before gaining their political independence and that truly cherish the same values that our free and open societies treasure. 
The Great War happened three decades prior to the independence of both India and Israel. Yet, both people were able to have even before that a strong bondage. A bondage, ladies and gentlemen, which was also reflected in the rich and active lives of the flourishing Jewish community in India, a community whose son and leader, General Jacob, we are fortunate to have with us today.
Haifa, located on the green slopes of Mount Carmel lowering into the blue water of the Mediterranean, shares similarities with India in many ways. It is home to many people with various faiths and religions, living together side by side. Haifa, probably one of the most culturally diverse cities in Israel, is home to Jews, Christians, Muslim, Druze and Bahai that live together in a blend of language, culture, food and religion.
And this Israeli salad bowl, the equivalent of the Indian Thali, is what makes us special and strong.
In the cemetery for those fallen soldiers of the British forces, one can find Christian soldiers, Hindus, Sikhs, Muslim and Jewish soldiers. The sense of shared destiny and friendship among people with different backgrounds, as well as their bravery, is a legacy they left for the residents and people of Haifa and all of Israel today.
A while back, the municipality of Haifa had decided to include in its school curriculum stories of the valiant efforts of the Indian soldiers in liberating the city. For, it is our duty to preserve, but even more than that, to share with our sons and daughters this heritage and this memory of those who sacrificed their lives.
Next week we will host a delegation of the Indian Lok Sabha members in Israel. Together with Ambassador Jaideep Sarkar, they will participate for the third time in a ceremony in the Haifa Indian Cemetery honoring the Indian fallen soldiers.
Dear friends, as the Ambassador of Israel and as a proud son of the city of Haifa, I am grateful that you granted me the opportunity to commemorate today those who had liberated my hometown and to pay my respect to those who have lost their lives doing so. Haifa Day is for us a day of memory and honor for those brave soldiers.
May their souls rest in peace. 
יהי זכרם ברוך
Description: D:\DATA\Downloads\9 Gen. Jacob addressing the gathering.JPG             Description: D:\DATA\Downloads\1 Lto R HE Alon Ushpiz, Gen Jacob, Rajesh Gogna.JPG
Haifa Day celebrations at Delhi on 23 Sept 2013.
Seen in pictures are Israel Ambassador Alon Ushpiz, Lt Gen JFR Jacob,
Advocate Rajesh Gogna, and Sushil Pandit
Chapter – 6:
Fallen in the cause of Other Nations
Indian soldiers fought, played key roles and died in the liberation and Independence of a few countries like Israel, Bangladesh, Singapore, Malaysia and Myanmar. But their martyrdom and sacrifice are not well documented. Proper memorials have not been erected in those countries, nor are their feats included in the school texts in India and those countries. At least a few streets in those countries should be named after them.
1942 - 1945:         Freedom of Singapore, Malaysia and Burma
The Indian National Army (INA; Azad Hind Fauj), an armed force was formed by Indian nationalists in 1942 in Southeast Asia during World War II. This army comprised of Indian prisoners of war captured by Japan from British forces in Malaya, Singapore and Hong Kong. It also included volunteers from the Indian expatriate population in Singapore, Malaya and Burma. In 1945 INA had 40,000 soldiers including 18,000 Indian civilians from these countries. Several thousand Indians died in the ‘Death Rail’ while laying rail track from Thailand to Burma under the Japanese regime.
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose formally announced the establishment of the Provisional Government of Free India in October 1943. He was the Head of the State, The Prime Minister and the Minister for War and Foreign Affairs. Captain Doctor Lakshmi Swaminathan (later married as Lakshmi Sehgal) was the Minister in Charge of Women's Organization. She held this position over and above her command of the Rani Jhansi Regiment, a brigade of women soldiers fighting for the Indian National Army.
INA fought along with the Imperial Japanese Army against the British and Commonwealth forces in the campaigns in Burma, Imphal and Kohima. INA aroused patriotic fervour and love for freedom among the people of Singapore, Malaysia, Burma and India and paved the way for the independence of these countries. Many Indians and expatriate Indians died in the INA wars against the British regime.
Colonel Shaukat Malik of the Indian National Army, (INA) hoisted the Tricolour for the first time on Indian soil on 14 April 1944, in Moirang in Manipur with the help of Manipuris like Shri Mairembam Koireng Singh and others.
(Shri Koireng Singh even arranged for food grains from his father's granary. Feeding thousands of the Azad Hind Fauz soldiers for 3 months was the contribution made by Koireng and his colleagues during the war for independence. Shri Koireng was the first elected Chief Minister of Manipur. He was elected as Chief Minister of Manipur thrice.)
The INA Museum at Moirang displays some wartime relics and photographs. INA also governed Andaman and Nicobar Islands from February 1944 to October 1945.
The INA Monument was established in 1995 by the National Heritage Board of Singapore at Esplanade Park. The Indian community in Singapore contributed the required finance. The monument is now officially one of the Historical sites in Singapore.
Liberation of Bangladesh in 1971
Indo-Pakistani war of 1971:             It was one of the shortest (merely 13 days) wars in history. It was also the most decisive victory with the liberation and formation of a new populous country Bangladesh and capture of 93,000 Pakistani soldiers.
 ‘India won a glorious victory against Pakistan in the 1971 war. It was the first decisive victory in a major war in centuries. And it was won singlehandedly, in the face of opposition and threats from a majority of the UN member-States, including a superpower. Every Indian patriot felt proud of this glittering chapter in the nation's history.'
-- Dr S N Prasad in his introduction to the Indian government's 'restricted' Official History of the 1971 War.
Nearly 8,000 Indian soldiers laid down their lives in liberating East Pakistan (later known as Bangladesh) from the genocidal attack of West Pakistan.
The Bangladesh Liberation War, also known as the Bangladesh War of Independence is known in Bengali as Muktijuddho.
Pakistani military junta based in West Pakistan launched Operation Searchlight against the people of East Pakistan in March 1971. It pursued the systematic elimination of nationalist Bengali civilians, students, intelligentsia, Bengali Hindus and Buddhists and armed personnel. Members of the Pakistani military and supporting militias like the Razakars, Al-Badr and Al-Shams engaged in mass murder, deportation and genocidal rape. Bangladesh government figures state that Pakistani forces aided by collaborators killed three million Bengali people, raped 200,000 women and displaced millions of others.
 An estimated 10 million East Pakistan Bengali refugees fled to neighbouring India. Taxes were levied on entire Indian population to meet the economic burden of feeding and taking care of the millions of Bengali refugees.
India joined the war on 3 December 1971, after Pakistan launched preemptive air strikes on North India. USA, Europe and China supported Pakistan. US supported Pakistan by supplying them Patton Tanks, Sabre Jets, one sophisticated submarine USS Diablo (SS-479) and Surveillance system for airports. Dispatch of the much-dreaded aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (Seventh Fleet) to the Bay of Bengal to intimidate the Indian government was the height of US desperations.
(India tactically used INS Vikrant and Indian Airbase at Andaman & Nikobar Islands to deter USS Enterprise. Indian navy also sank US sophisticated submarine USS Diablo (SS-479) also known as PNS Gazi off Vishakhapatnam harbor. These forced the Americans to move away from the Indian Ocean and a major confrontation was averted.)
The subsequent Indo-Pakistani War witnessed engagements on two war fronts, east and west. With Indian air supremacy achieved in the eastern theatre and the rapid advance of the Allied Forces of Bangladesh and India, Pakistan surrendered in Dacca on 16 December 1971. 93,000 Pakistanis including 81,000 uniformed personnel of Pakistan Armed Forces under Gen. Niazi, were taken as Prisoners of War by the Indian Army.  
The war changed the geopolitical landscape of South Asia, with the emergence of Bangladesh as the seventh-most populous country in the world. Due to complex regional alliances, the War was a major episode in Cold War tensions involving the United States, the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China.
World is yearning for peace. Peace can be achieved only through spiritualism. Peace and Spiritualism are contained only in the messages of Vedas, Upanishads, Ramayan, Gita and Sant-vanis.
When will the world listen to these eternal messages? !!
Only when Bharat becomes strong militarily and economically, world will listen to the eternal message of spirituality and peace contained in our books and history. Unless Bharat becomes strong, peace in the world will be an illusion. For Bharat to become strong, youth and children must be educated on the achievements of our ancestors. This book is a small effort towards instilling in them a sense of patriotism. 

Unless Bharat becomes strong, peace in the world will be an illusion. For Bharat to become strong, youth and children must be educated on the achievements of our ancestors. This book is a small effort towards instilling in them a sense of patriotism. 

Only when Bharat becomes strong militarily and economically, world will listen to the eternal message of spirituality and peace contained in the Vedas, Upanishads, Ramayan, Gita and Sant-vanis. Unless Bharat becomes strong, peace in the world will be an illusion. For Bharat to become strong, youth and children must be educated on the achievements of our ancestors. This book is a small effort towards instilling in them a sense of patriotism.  

Chapter -1:      Indian Heroic Role in Israel Independence - A Brief Account
Chapter -2:   Cultural Ties between India and Israel
Chapter -3:   India’s Heroic Role in Israel’s Independence - The Larger Story
Chapter -4:   Centenary Celebrations of Haifa Day in 2018
Chapter -5:   Speech by Israel Ambassador Alon Ushpiz on Liberation of Haifa by Indian Soldiers
Chapter -6:   Fallen in the cause of Other Nations

Mind Boggling Wars fought by Israelis and Indians
Both India and Israel are surrounded by enemies who constantly engage them in wars. Both Indians and Jews are known for bravery in war.  Their courage has won a few mind-blowing battles in the 20th century.
APPENDIX - 1:             Mind Boggling Wars fought by Israelis
1967:                               The 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.
Relations between Israel and its neighbours had never fully normalised following the 1948 Arab–Israeli War. In the period leading up to June 1967, tensions became dangerously heightened. In reaction to the mobilisation of Egyptian forces along the Israeli border in the Sinai Peninsula, Israel launched a series of preemptive airstrikes against Egyptian airfields. The Egyptians were caught by surprise, and nearly the entire Egyptian air force was destroyed with few Israeli losses, giving the Israelis air superiority. Simultaneously, the Israelis launched a ground offensive into the Gaza Strip and the Sinai, which again caught the Egyptians by surprise. After some initial resistance, Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser ordered the evacuation of the Sinai. Israeli forces rushed westward in pursuit of the Egyptians, inflicted heavy losses, and conquered the Sinai.
Nasser induced Syria and Jordan to begin attacks on Israel by using the initially confused situation to claim that Egypt had defeated the Israeli air strike. Israeli counterattacks resulted in the seizure of East Jerusalem as well as the West Bank from the Jordanians, while Israel's retaliation against Syria resulted in its occupation of the Golan Heights.
On June 11, a ceasefire was signed. Arab casualties were far heavier than those of Israel: fewer than a thousand Israelis had been killed compared to over 20,000 from the Arab forces. Israel's military success was attributed to the element of surprise, an innovative and well-executed battle plan, and the poor quality and leadership of the Arab forces.
Israel seized control of the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan, and the Golan Heights from Syria.
Israeli morale and international prestige was greatly increased by the outcome of the war and the area under Israeli control tripled.

4 July 1976:       Operation Entebbe at Entebbe Airport in Uganda
In June of 1976, an Air France plane, carrying 248 passengers and 12 crew, from France to Israel was hijacked and flown to Entebbe Airport in Uganda, home of dictator Idi Amin. The pro-Palestinian hijackers threatened to kill the hostages if demands for the release of their prisoners in Israel were not met. The hijackers released all the non-Jewish hostages and would have released the plane's crew, but the crew insisted the safety of passengers were their responsibility and stayed behind. In total, 105 hostages remained behind, 2,500 miles (4,000 km) away from Israel holed up in Uganda's principal airport, surrounded by an openly pro-hijacker military of Uganda.
None of this was a deterrent for Israeli Special Forces. They knew that a situation like that is all about full preparation. So, they rounded up all the contractors who had worked in Uganda, as well as some of the released hostages, and constructed a huge mock-up of the terminal at Entebbe where the Israeli special task force soldiers practiced.
Once they were ready, the team of 200 Israeli Defense Forces units flew in four cargo planes, skimming along the treetops at a height no higher than 99 feet. They skimmed over various countries that hated them.  
Amin was known to drive luxury vehicles, and to drive at high speeds. The rescue plan was to land at the airport and quickly dispatch some luxury Mercedes and Land Rovers to the hostage holding area in an attempt to fool the guards into thinking Amin himself was arriving.
The Israelis landed at 11 p.m. on 3rd July 1976. While one team rescued the hostages, another group secured the perimeter and set about refueling the planes. Refueling a huge plane takes an hour; all the while surrounded, in a hostile airport.
But they did it. 102 out of 105 hostages were rescued. Five Israeli commandos were wounded and one, the unit commander, Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu, was killed. All the hijackers, three hostages and 45 Ugandan soldiers were killed, and thirty (some say 11) Soviet-built MiG-17s and MiG-21s of Uganda's air force were destroyed. Kenyan sources supported Israel, and in the aftermath of the operation several hundred Kenyans present in Uganda were slaughtered by the orders of Idi Amin of Uganda.
Operation Entebbe, which had the military codename Operation Thunderbolt, is sometimes referred to retroactively as Operation Jonathan in memory of the unit's leader, Yonatan Netanyahu. He was the older brother of Benjamin Netanyahu, the current Prime Minister of Israel.

Mind-Boggling Wars fought by Indians
Most Indians do not know that the Indus Valley Civilisation had more than 1000 urban locations, or that the people of that era sailed 3500 kms by sea to Babylonia (now Arabia) for trade, or that they had invented what we proudly call Western Flush Toilets today or they had covered drainage system or they used the decimal system in weights and measurements. But most of us do know that the Egyptian and Roman civilisations were the greatest of their time, and that Greeks and Romans invented everything which modern science has in its foundation (another suspicious claim !!). Many Indians would not accept that various discoveries attributed to European scientists like Copernicus, Newton and Galileo were already known a thousand years before to Indian scientists like Aryabhatt, Brahma Gupta and Bhaskaracharya. 
Similarly our youth and students admire foreign war heroes like Alexander, Julius Caesar and Napolean but they hardly know that our own Pallavas, Cholas, Shailendras, Bappa Raval and Lalitaditya had successfully conquered South East Asia, Iran, Central Asia and Tibet. Unfortunately their names and achievements have not received the credit they deserve. The stunning victories of Maharaja Suhaldev of Uttar Pradesh, the Marathas led by Rani Tarabai and Rani Velu Nachiyar of Tamilnadu against formidable Afghans, Mughals and the British forces, have been relegated to the dustbins of history.

It is generally perceived that Hindus of ancient India never invaded other countries. This is not fully true. Great kings and warriors in India believed in the term Chakravartin. This is an ancient Indian term used to refer to an ideal universal ruler who rules ethically and benevolently over the entire world. Historically, Pallavas and Cholas of Tamilnadu, Shailendras, Kambu and Kaundinya of Orissa established great empires in South East Asia. Similarly Bappa Rawal of Rajasthan and Lalitaditya of Kashmir not only defeated the Arab invaders, but chased them deep back into their own countries and established their regime over Afghanistan, Iran and Central Asia. Rajendra Chola in 11th century CE conquered many parts of South East Asia and sailed upto China. He performed Ashvamedha Yajna to stamp his authority over many countries.
Even though Indians ruled over large landscapes, they never enslaved the inhabitants of that country, nor showed any racial or religious discrimination, a feat that is unheard of in most chapters of world history.

1st Century BCE:      Pallavas of Tamilnadu and Shailendras of Odisha establish Hinduised States of South East Asia
(Hindu Cultural Empire in Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam)
The seafaring kingdoms of Pallavas, Pandyas and the Cholas of Tamilnadu and the Kalingas of Odisha from first century Before Common Era (BCE), established Hinduised States in Indonesia and Indochina. This part of the world in local language is known as Swarnabhumi and many historians also refer to it as ‘Farther India’ or ‘Greater India’. Greater India is characterized today by deep traces of Hinduisation that occurred centuries before: the importance of the Sanskrit element in the vocabulary of the languages spoken there; the Indian origin of the alphabets with which those languages have been or still are written; the influence of Indian law or administrative organization; the persistence of certain Hindu traditions in the countries converted to Islam as well as those converted to Singhalese Buddhism; and the presence of ancient monuments which in architecture and sculpture, are associated with the arts of India and bear inscriptions in Sanskrit.
The expansion of Hindu civilization to distant countries and islands in the East like Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam is one of the outstanding events in the history of the world, one which has determined the destiny of a great percentage of mankind. The Hinduised states prevented the expansion efforts of Chinese civilization in these areas for nearly fifteen hundred years. There is absolutely no trace of Indian kings ever having practiced slavery, levying economic sanctions, abducting women, slaughtering innocent people, ransacking their kingdoms, burning and destroying their places of worship and libraries or forcibly converting the population. Preah Vihear, a ninth century temple for Lord Shiva has been the subject of conflict between Thailand and Cambodia, as both claim their ownership. Every country in South East Asia has its own version of Ramayana. Garuda Airlines is the national carrier of Indonesia. All the ministers including Prime Minister in Malaysia take oath of office in the name of Lord Rama’s Paduka (sandal) and the President who is from one of the nine Sultans, takes oath in the name of Dhuli (sacred dust) of Lord Rama’s Paduka. 

Kambu Swayambhu, the founder of Khmer Empire in Cambodia, South East Asia.
Legend says that Kambu Swayambhu was a learned Indian king. He had ventured into Cambodia and entered an area having jungles. Defeating their king, Kambu married the princess, Mer, and developed the land into a fertile and flourishing country. The combination of Kambu and Mer names is said to have given rise to the name Khmer (Kambu + Mer =Khmer) according to George Coedes. George Coedes (1886 –1969) was a 20th-century French scholar of Southeast Asian archaeology and history. Khmers are the ethnic people of Cambodia. All the princes of Kambodia expressly state themselves as descendants of Kambu.

Kaundinya, the founder of Funan (Cambodia) Empire
According to reports by two Chinese envoys, Kang Tai and Chu Ying, the state of Funan was established by an Indian Brahmin named Kaundinya. In the 1st century CE. Kaundinya (chinese: Hun Tien) was given instruction in a dream to take a magic bow from a temple and defeat a princess named Soma (Chinese: Liu Ye, “Willow Leaf”), the daughter of the king of the Naga. He later married the princess and their lineage became the royal dynasty of Funan. Kaundinya later built a capital, and changed the name of the country to 'Kambuja'. In reality, the myth has Indian origins: the Pallavas of South India had adopted this genealogy to explain their dynastic origins, for the first Pallava ruler of Kanchipuram was supposed to be the son of a Chola king and a naga princess. The legend somehow reached Cambodia, where it was adopted by the Funan kings to explain their dynastic origins, and a legendary first King Kaundinya came into being.

Bappa Rawal (713-810 CE), founder of the Mewar Dynasty expanded his territory to Afghanistan and Iran.
The wrong need resistance and the right need assistance.
Bappa Rawal was the eighth ruler of the Gahlot dynasty and founder of the Mewar Dynasty (r. 734-753 CE) in present-day Rajasthan, India. He played an important role in the Battle of Rajasthan. This was a series of wars fought in the 8th century CE. between the Rajput rulers of North-Western India and the Arabs of Sindh, in which the regional Indian rulers inflicted a resounding defeat on the invading Arabs.
In the 8th century Arabs started attacking India, which was basically an extension of invasion of Persia. Bin Qasim was able to defeat Dahirsen in Sindh but was stopped by Bappa Rawal. Bappa Rawal defeated and pursued Bin Qasim through Saurashtra and back to the western banks of the Sindhu (i.e. current day Baluchistan). Bappa Rawal then marched on to Ghazni and defeated the local ruler Salim. Bappa Rawal and his armies invaded various kingdoms including Kandahar (Afghanistan) and Iranian cities of Khorasan, Turan and Ispahan and made them vassals of his kingdom. Thus he not only defended India's frontiers but for a brief period was able to expand them.
Lalitaditya Muktapiḍa
Lalitaditya Muktapiḍa (reign: 724 – 760 CE) Ruler from Kashmir ruled Afghanistan, Central Asia and Tibet.
Lalitaditya is one more unsung hero of Indian history. He was the most powerful ruler of Kashmir region. This dynasty exercised influence in northwestern India from 625 CE until 1003. Historian Kalhana's Rajatarangini credits Lalitaditya with extensive conquests and leading aggressive military campaigns in Northern India and Central Asia. Hermann Goetz (1898-1976), a pioneer of Museum movement in India confirms the description of Kalhana as actual fact. Some recently acquired evidence also supports the incidents and conquests mentioned in Rajatarangini. Besides Kalhana, the Chinese, Turkish and Tibetan legends also refer to him as a great conqueror.
Sind was conquered by Muhammad bin Qasim in 715 CE. A Turk Junaid in 730 CE succeeded him. But his army had to face the onslaught of the combined strength of Lalitaditya as well as Yashovarman. Turk armies were soundly defeated by the Hindu alliance. Lalitaditya is said to have ordered the Turks to shave off half of their heads as a symbol of their submission. The numerous conquests of Lalitaditya are also mentioned by the brilliant Iranian Muslim scholar traveller Al-biruni (973 - 1048 CE). Al-biruni, for example, informs that a festival was held on the second day of Chaitra (March) every year for centuries to celebrate the victory of King Lalitaditya over the Turks.
Lalitaditya was keen on teaching Arabs a lesson by pushing back the defeated Arabs. He therefore conquered Dardistan or Darad-Desha (northern Pakistan, and Kashmir in India and parts of north-eastern Afghanistan) and portion of Central Asia corresponding approximately with modern-day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, southern Kyrgyzstan and southwest Kazakhstan. When Tibet invaded Kashmir, Lalitadidtya defeated the Tibetans.
Lalitaditya transformed Kashmir in to one of the most powerful state in the South and Central Asia. During the time of Lalitaditya, it’s boundaries covered an area from Tibet in the east to Iran in the west and from Turkestan in the north. Lalitaditya was not only the greatest king of Kashmir but also one of the greatest kings of India.
Rajendra Chola I (Reign: 1014 – 1044 CE) conquered South East Asia.
Rajendra Chola was a Chola emperor who is considered one of the greatest rulers and military generals of India. He succeeded his father Rajaraja Chola I in 1014 CE. He defeated Mahipala, the king of Bengal and Bihar. During his reign, he extended the influence of the Chola empire to the banks of the river Ganga in North India and across the Indian ocean to the West, making the Chola Empire as one of the most powerful empires of India. Rajendra’s conquests included the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Sri Lanka, Maldives and South East Asia including Malaysia, Southern Thailand and Indonesia. He sailed through many countries in South East and Far East countries including South China. He exacted tribute from Thailand and the Khmer kingdom of Cambodia. Some tribes in Sumetra, Indonesia bear the title Chola.
His Southeast Asia campaign intensified several interactions between India and Southeast Asia. The campaign also led to the establishment of diplomatic ties with China. The first Indian embassy to the court of the Song Emperor was sent by Raja Raja Chola I in 1015. This was followed by a second embassy by his son, Rajendra Chola I, in 1033 and a third by Kulothunga Chola I in 1077.
Traders from the Tamil country firmly established themselves over various parts of South-East Asia. A merchant guild was set up in Burma and another in Sumatra in 1088. Indian historian V. R. Ramachandra Dikshitar suggests that Tamil traders of the Chola period might have had some knowledge of Australia and Polynesia.

Some of the wars that India fought against foreign invaders rank among the greatest wars in human history.
1033 CE:       Battle of Bahraich 13-14 June 1033
100,000 Afghan invaders defeated and put to the sword by a Dalit King Raja Suhaldev. Not a single invader was spared.
An enemy saved in a battle is an evil that can burn a person even without fire.   Chanakya
Salar Masud (1015 - 1032 CE) was the nephew of Sultan Mahmud Ghaznavi. He was 11 years old (in 1026 CE) when he took part in the invasion of Somnath with his uncle. Salar Masud wanted to Islamize India. He therefore, entered India with an army of more than 100,000 men with 50,000 horses in May 1031. His onward march into Bharat was challenged by an Indian Dalit king Raja Suheldev of Sravasti, who forged an alliance with 17 kshatriya rulers of Northern India. Indians under Raja Suhaldev defeated and put to death Afghan invader Salar Masud and his 100,000 soldiers in a span of 2 days on 13 and 14 June 1033. As agreed, not one invading soldier was pardoned or taken as prisoner of war but was put to the sword including Salar Masud. The legend of Suhaldev and Salar Masud is found in the Persian language Mirat-i-Masudi.
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj (1627- 1680) defeated many strong generals of Mogul empire in the north and Bhamini Sultans in the south of India, and established an a Hindu empire under the guidance of his mentor Saint Samarth Ramdas. He is famous the world over for his ingenuity of guerilla warfare by which method he could defeat armies very much larger than his own.
North Vietnam was engaged in a war from 1955 to 1975 against the wealthiest and most powerful of all nations – America. In the end North Vietnam succeeded in defeating America in that war of 20 years and united the country. During the long and difficult war period, Vietcong leaders could inspire and instill confidence among Vietcong soldiers by recollecting and narrating the heroic saga of Shivaji Maharaj and of his military generals. This finally led the Vietnamese to victory. Latin American military leaders like Fidel Castro and Che Guevara too used Shivaji’s guerilla war techniques in their freedom struggle in Cuba. Shivaji, true to his Hindu spirit, attacked only the enemy soldiers and never assaulted innocent men, women or children, which most coward terrorists today resort to!!

1700 – 1707 CE:     Tarabai’s Battles against Moghul Emperor Aurangazeb
The years 1700-1707, when the mighty Mughal army under Aurangazeb was fighting the Marathas.  Famous historian, Jadunath Sarkar has opined about this period as: "During this period, the supreme guiding force in Maharashtra was not any minister but the dowager queen Tara Bai Mohite. Her administrative genius and strength of character saved the nation in that awful crisis."
Tarabai Bhonsle (1675 –1761) was a royal from the Maratha Empire of India. She was the queen of Chhatrapati Rajaram Bhonsle, son of the empire's founder Shivaji. She is acclaimed for her role in keeping alive the resistance against Mughal occupation of Maratha territories after the death of her husband in 1700. Tarabai was the daughter of the famed Maratha general Hambirao Mohite. On Rajaram's death in 1700, she proclaimed her infant son, Shivaji II as Rajaram's successor and herself as the regent. As the regent she took charge of the war against Aurangzeb's forces. Tarabai was skilled in cavalry movement, and made strategic movements herself during wars. She personally led the war and continued the insurgency against the Mughals. By 1705, Marathas had crossed the Narmada and made incursions in Malwa.

Aurangazeb’s Deccan invasion: In 1681, a year after Shivaji’s death, Mughal emperor Aurangazeb personally led an army of 500,000 (with 30,000 elephants and 50,000 camels) into the Deccan to kill the relatively young and less formidable Maratha Empire. It was a disproportionate war in all senses. The Marathas fought bravely for 26 years, sometimes without a leader and many a times without regular wages; but inspired by nationalism, they reduced the vast Mughal empire to within the walls of Delhi. The Maratha resistance was led initially by Sambhaji (1681-89), then by Rajaram (1689-1700) and finally from 1700 onwards by Rani Tarabai. Rani Tarabai, the Queen of Maratha Empire was a spirited lady who did not waste time or tears on her husband’s death or on the fall of the new capital Satara. She infused vigor in her people and organized a tough opposition to Aurangzeb.
Under the leadership of Rani Tarabai, the Maratha power grew stronger and stronger with the result that Aurangzeb was compelled to be on the defensive. She moved constantly from fort to fort in order to direct operations and encourage her men. The success of Maratha war of independence was in no small measure due to the indomitable personality of the Maratha Queen. The Marathas under her ravaged Burhanpur, Surat, Bharuch and other rich towns of the western coast that belonged to Mughals and Portuguese. Marathas also established their rule over Southern Karnatak.
The Indologist Stanley Wolpert, American emeritus professor, says that:
The conquest of the Deccan, to which, Aurangzeb devoted the last 26 years of his life, was in many ways a Pyrrhic victory, costing an estimated hundred thousand lives a year during its last decade of futile chess game warfare. The expense in gold and rupees can hardly be accurately estimated. Aurangzeb's encampment was like a moving capital – a city of tents 30 miles in circumference, with some 250 bazaars, with a 1⁄2 million camp followers, 50,000 camels and 30,000 elephants ... Even Aurangzeb, had ceased to understand the purpose of it all by the time he was nearing 90 ... "I came alone and I go as a stranger. I do not know who I am, nor what I have been doing," the dying old man confessed to his son, Azam, a few days before his death in 1707.
‘I have sinned terribly, and I do not know what punishment awaits me’ lamented the Mughal emperor.
In 1691 Aurangazeb’s Mughal Empire extended as far as Tanjore and Trichinapally in the south. It was the biggest empire in Indian history till then. But brave Rani Tarabai and the determined Marathas made a mockery of it and systematically cut it to size. After the death of Aurangzeb, within a decade, the Mughals were confined to Delhi itself. By 1758, the Marathas had reached Delhi, Multan and Peshawar. When the British arrived, they were fighting not the Mughals but Marathas all over Bharat.
Rani Tarabai remains one of the most celebrated women in Indian History.

1780 CE:       Battle of Sivagangai when Rani Velu Nachiyar defeated the British army with an all women army.
Rani Veera Mangai Velu Nachiyar
(born 3 January 1730; died 25 December 1796)
Veera Mangai Velu Nachiyar was the princess of Ramanathapuram, Tamilnadu and the only child of Raja Chellamuthu Sethupathy (चेल्लमुत्थु सेतुपति) of Ramnad Kingdom. She was trained in war tactics, weapons usage, martial arts including Silambam (fighting using stick), horse riding and archery. She was a scholar in many languages and she had proficiency in languages such as French, English and Urdu. She married the king of Sivagangai, from whom she had a daughter.
Her husband, Muthuvaduganathaperiya Udaiyathevar was killed in a battle by British soldiers and the son of the Nawab of Arcot. She was then drawn into the battle. She escaped with her daughter and lived under the protection of Palayakaarar Gopaala Naayakkar at Virupachi near Dindigul for eight years. During this period she formed armies both of men and women. Her woman's army was named “Udaiyaal” in honour of her adopted daughter — Udaiyaal, who died detonating a British arsenal.
She sought an alliance with Gopala Nayaker with the aim of attacking the British. In 1780, she confronted the British with her all women army. Her men soldiers and the army of Gopala Nayakar were sent to engage and stop Nawab of Arcot, who came to the help of the British. Velu Nachiyar successfully fought the British. When she found the place where the British stored their ammunition, she arranged a suicide attack: a faithful follower, Kuyili, doused herself in oil, set herself alight and walked into the storehouse. This act of sacrifice changed the course of the battle and Velu Nachiyar regained her territory.
Maharani Nachiar was one of the very few rulers who regained their kingdom from the British and ruled for more than ten years. Veera Mangai Velu Nachiyar was the first queen to fight for freedom from the British in India. She is perhaps the only queen in the world to defeat any western power with an all women army. On 31 December 2008, Indian government released a commemorative postage stamp in her honor.
1897 CE:       Battle of Saragarhi on 12 September 1897
If any one tells he is never afraid of death, he is a liar or he is a Jawan in the Indian army.
21 Sikh Indian soldiers accounted for 800 enemies when attacked by 10,000-armed Afghans.
Battle of Saragarhi on 12 September 1897 is a encounter in which 21 Sikh soldiers of British India, given an option to run away or fight, faced an attack of 10,000 Pashtun Afghan tribes. The Sikhs chose to fight to death than to run away. Though all the Sikhs died they had accounted for 800 enemy lives at Tirah, North-West Frontier Province, in modern day Pakistan. The Sikh contigent was led by Havildar Ishar Singh.
Description: D:\Hasee Ravi-Data-9.8 - 25GB (E)\Changeable- DATA\Battle of Saragarhi 1897.jpg             Description: Members of the 11th Sikh Regiment in 1860
When the gallantry of Saragarhi was recounted to the Parliament of the United Kingdom, the recitation drew a standing ovation from the members. All the 21 Sikh soldiers were posthumously awarded the Indian Order of Merit, the highest gallantry award of that time, which an Indian soldier could receive at the hands of the British crown, the corresponding gallantry award being Victoria Cross. This award is equivalent to today's Param Vir Chakra awarded by the President of India. The battle has become iconic of Indian military tradition, eastern military civilization, British empire military history and Sikh history.

Battle of Haifa 22-23 September 1918 One of the Greatest Wars of Human History
A large number of Indian soldiers sent by the Maharajas of Jodhpur and Mysore sacrificed their lives in Israel (West Asia) during First World War in 1918. In the battle of Haifa, the Indian soldiers were equipped only with swords and lances and they were fighting against the formidable enemies who were well fortified in their own territories and armed with modern guns, tanks and cannons. In spite of this rank disparity, the Indians displaying enormous courage defeated the combined forces of Turks, Germans and Austrians and liberated the Israeli port city of Haifa in September 1918.
Their graves are preserved and looked after as a mark of respect by the present government of Israel. Their names, bravery and sacrifice are remembered every year on 23 September and included in their school textbooks.
The Battle of Haifa therefore, remains as one of the greatest wars of human history. It is a golden chapter in Indian history, which can inspire every Indian child and youth.
1962 CE:       Indo-China War: Battle at Rezang-La Pass
A battle in which 109 out of 123 Indian officers and jawans laid down their lives defending Indian territory while inflicting over 1200 (some say 1700) casualties on Chinese soldiers. This inspired Kavi Pradeep to pen the immortal song, ‘AI MERE WATAN KE LOGON ……’
During the Sino-Indian War in 1962, the Battle of Rezang-la pass in Chushul valley in Ladhak on 18 November was a saga of unprecedented courage, valour and supreme sacrifice. The battle was fought at an altitude of 16,000 feet where the air was thin, bereft of enough oxygen. The icy winds howling through Rezang La were biting and benumbing. More than the thin air and cold winds, the location of Rezang La had a more serious drawback. It was crested to Indian artillery because of an intervening feature, which meant that the Indians had to make without the protective comfort of the big guns. The Chinese advanced with rifles and light machine guns in the dim light of the morning.
109 out of 123 officers and jawans laid down their lives before accounting for at least 1200 (some say 1700) Chinese soldiers. Such was their act of bravery that three days later, the Chinese announced a unilateral ceasefire on November 21, 1962. The all-Yadav company of the 13th Kumaon battalion was led by Major Shaitan Singh Bhati, who won a posthumous Param Vir Chakra, India’s highest gallantry award for conspicuous bravery or self-sacrifice in the face of enemy attack. Kavi Pradeep wrote the immortal song “AI MERE WATAN KE LOGON ….” on this episode.
1965 CE:       Battle of Asal Uttar, September 1965
During tha Battle of Asal Uttar from 8 to 10 September 1965, Pakistan lost more than 99 tanks in the 3 days war. It was a decisive victory for India. It is described as one of the greatest tank battles since the Battle of Kursk in the Second World War. While India lost 10 tanks, Pakistanis lost more than 99 tanks mostly Pattons, and a few Shermans and Chaffees. The battle also witnessed the personal bravery of an Indian soldier, Abdul Hamid, who was honoured with the Param Vir Chakra, India's highest military award, for knocking out seven enemy tanks with a recoilless gun. This battle led to the creation of Patton Nagar (or "Patton City") at the site of the battle. This is because a large number of Patton tanks fielded by the Pakistani forces were either captured or destroyed at the scene.

1971 CE:       13 Day War:                         Liberation of Bangladesh
The Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 (3 to 16 December 1971)
Lasting just 13 days, the Indo-Pak war of 1971 is one of the shortest wars in history. Indian victory is glorious for the fact that United States supported Pakistan both politically and materially. 93,000 Pakistanis including 81,000 uniformed personnel of Pakistan Armed Forces, were taken as Prisoners of War by the Indian Army and  liberated Bangladesh a country with an area of 147,570 km2.
The war effectively came to an end after the Eastern Commander of the Pakistani Armed Forces signed the Instrument of Surrender, on 16 December 1971 in Dhaka, marking the liberation of the new nation of Bangladesh.
For Pakistan it was a complete and humiliating defeat, a psychological setback that came from a defeat at the hands of intense rival India. Pakistan lost half its population and a significant portion of its economy and suffered setbacks to its geo-political role in South Asia. There is no parallel in contemporary history to the catastrophe that engulfed Pakistan.
Lt Gen Niazi signing the Instrument of Surrender under the gaze of Lt Gen Aurora . Standing immediately behind from L to R: Vice Admiral Krishnan, Air Marshal Dewan, Lt Gen Sagat Singh, Maj Gen JFR Jacob (with Flt Lt Krishnamurthy peering over his shoulder). Veteran newscaster, Surojit Sen of All India Radio, is seen holding a microphone on the right.
Magnanimity of General Manekshaw
(When the Indian Prime minister asked General Manekshaw to go to Dhaka and accept the surrender of Pakistani forces, he declined, magnanimously saying that the honour should go to his army commander in the East, Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Arora.)
“If you know yourself and the enemy, you need not fear the result of hundred battles,
If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained, you will also suffer defeat,
If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle”.
-Sun Tzu (Chinese military Strategist, philosopher 544 BCE)

1971 Indo-Pak war
Battle of Longewala (4-7 Dec 1971)
While India lost 2 soldiers, Pakistan lost 200 soldiers even though Pakistan came fully prepared and equipped and took India by surprise. Pakistan also lost 34 tanks and 500 vehicles and India lost one vehicle.
120 Indian soldiers with 4 Hawk Hunters, 1 HAL Krishak and 1 jeep mounted M40 recoilless rifle were suddenly attacked on 4th December 1971 by 2,000 Pakistani soldiers. Pakistan also had superior firepower. They were supported by 1 mobile infantry brigade and 45 American Patton tanks. Yet the battle was over in 4 days on 7th December with a decisive morale boosting victory for the Indians.
Indian casualties in the battle were two soldiers along with one of their jeep mounted recoil-less rifles knocked out. Pakistani losses were 200 soldiers killed.  The Pakistanis also suffered the loss of 34 tanks destroyed or abandoned, and lost 500 additional vehicles. Capturing or destroying 34 tanks remains one of the largest disproportionate tank casualties for one side in a single battle after World War II.
The Battle of Longewala (4–7 December 1971) was one of the first major engagements in the Western Sector during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, fought between assaulting Pakistani forces and Indian defenders at the Indian border post of Longewala, in the Thar Desert of the Rajasthan state in India.
Brigadier Kuldip Singh Chanduri was awarded Mahavir Chakra, India’s second higherst gallantry award. Pakistan tried their Major General Mustafa for negligence.

Appendix -1:   Mind Boggling Wars fought by Israel
Appendix -2 & 3:          Mind Boggling Wars fought by Indians
Ref: The Hinduised States of Indochina and Indonesia (Les états hindouisés d'Indochine et d'Indonésie) by George Coedes
Ancient history of Hinduised States of Far East (Histoire ancienne des États hindouisés d'Extrême-Orient) by George Coedes

Haifa Day Celebrations on 23 September 2013
  Delhi Address by Retd. Lt Gen Jacob             Also seen HE Ambassador of Israel
Delhi Address by Tarun Vijay, Member Parliament               Delhi   Invitation

     Thane (near Mumbai) Invitation                           Jodhpur Rajasthan


Other books by the author (Ravi Kumar)
1.  Glimpses of Hindu Genius: (English) The book describes the achievements of Indians and overseas Indians in modern times as well as ancient times. 

2.  Hindu Pratibha Darshan: (Hindi) This is the Hindi version of the book, ‘Glimpses of Hindu Genius’. It is also available in Tamil and Telugu. 

3.  Ramayana Around the World – a Living Legend: This book describes the impact of Ramayana in today’s life and civilization in Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, China, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan and Iran. 

4.  Hindu Resurgence in South East Asia: This is the amazing story of Hindu cultural imprints in South East Asia. 

5.  YOGA: Bharat’s Invaluable Gift to the World: This Book describes the popularity of Yoga across the globe and how many Heads of States, VIPs, Hollywood Celebrities, Sports and Music Icons in different countries have taken to Yoga.
6.  YOGA: Bharat ki Vishwa Ko Anmol Bhet: This is the Hindi version of the book on Yoga in English.
7.  HAIFA – Indian Heroism in Israel: The book describes the inspiring story of how Jodhpur and Mysore cavaliers fought (a war when the British retreated fearing heavy loss), and liberated Haifa, a sea port in Israel, in 1918 during World War –I, thus paving the way for the modern state of Israel.  This book is also available in Hindi.

Books in writing (to be published later)
1.  India’s Resurgence in 21st Century: Book describes how India and Overseas Indians are entering the centre stage of world business, politics and culture.
2.  Great Indian Muslims – Role Models for Indian Youth: The book describes the illustrious lives of great Muslim saints, scholars, social workers, musicians, freedom fighters, patriots and administrators who served our Motherland and humanity.
3. Vedic Mathematics & India’s Contribution in Mathematics & Science: The book describes contribution of Indians in Mathematics from Vedic Rishi Bodhayan to Ramanujam & Dr Manjul Bhargav.
4. India Israel Together for Two Thousand Years: The book describes the interactions between the two races from 500 BCE to this day. The book explains similarities between Judaism and Hinduism, Hindus helping Jew refugees and contribution of Jews to India.

About the Author

Ravi Kumar did engineering from Chennai in 1970. During his college days he was All India General Secretary of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (1969-70). ABVP is considered as the largest student organisation in the world. He served as Project Engineer for five years and left his job with M/S Larsen & Toubro in 1975 to serve the society as an RSS Pracharak. He worked among the youth of Gujarat and tribal areas of Maharashtra.
He was transferred to Hong Kong in 1982. Since then he has been travelling to over 40 countries organising the Hindu society and inspiring them to serve. He has conducted more than 300 Yoga camps in 40 countries. He has also conducted over 500 workshops on Vedic Mathematics in many universities, socio-cultural institutions in 40 countries and also at the Royal Society of New Zealand. He has conducted three large scale Lord Buddha Exhibitions in Thailand. Over 50,000 students appear for Indian Science Talent Tests every year in different countries. Indian Traditional Games Festival and Blood Donation Drives are held in some countries every year. He is the Intl Joint Coordinator of Hindu Swayamsewak Sangh, Advisor of Vishwa Adhyayan Kendra, Mumbai and Chennai Center for Global Studies. He is a powerful speaker in English, Hindi and Tamil on Yoga, Gita, Vedas, India’s economy, Science, Technology, Development, history, Tradition, Culture, Literature and has addressed many International seminars and conferences. He has authored many books on different topics and these have been translated in different Indian languages. His book “YOGA, Bharat’s Invaluable Gift to the World” was released on 21 June 2015, the First Intl Day of Yoga at New York by Smt Sushma Swaraj, the Foreign Minister of India. Later the book was released for Hong Kong readers by Shri Lal Krishna Advani ji and in Dubai by legendary singer Yesudas.