In 1948, Egypt launched a large-scale offensive against the Negev region of Israel. This was part of the War of Independence, an attack by five Arab armies designed to "drive the Jews into the sea." Though the Jews were under-armed, untrained, and few in number, through ingenuity and perseverance they staved off the attacks and secured the borders. Yet the price was high -- Israel lost 6,373 of its people, a full one percent of the Jewish population of Israel at the time.
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