|When:||January 16, 2020|
The days following the partition vote of November 29, 1947 found the folk of Gush Etzion in celebration leavened with sorrow.
The story begins on January 15, 1948. Thirty-Five men set out by foot carrying heavy backpacks loaded with first-aid supplies, plasma, weapons, and ammunition, critical supplies for the embattled Jewish Gush Etzion communities. They were forced to ascend the Judean Mountains’ rocky terrain slowly. They departed before midnight, more than 15 miles from their destination. Other than braving a cold winter night, they first had to bypass a British police station unnoticed, and continue through hostile Arab territory.
The Thirty-Five walked throughout the night. Towards dawn they approached Zurif, the last Arab village before Gush Etzion, four miles away. The unit was detected and they were attacked.
The Thirty-Five bravely defended themselves against the fierce attacks of hundreds of Arabs from neighboring villages. Toward evening on January 16, the supply of ammunition which the Thirty-Five carried began to run out. The battle ended with the death of the last of the Thirty-Five who, having used up all their ammunition, died defending themselves with rocks in their hands.