Israel Defense Forces parade

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Israeli Independence Day military parade in 1956

The Israel Defense Forces parade was an event during the first 25 years of the State of Israel's existence to celebrate its military might. It was cancelled after 1973 due to financial concerns.

The first IDF parade took place during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, on July 27, 1948, on Allenby Street and Ben Yehuda Street in Tel Aviv.[1]

The second parade took place in 1949, on Israel's first independence day, in Tel Aviv. It failed in the process because the overenthusiastic crowd burst into the parade ground. It was nicknamed "The parade that did not march".

Starting with the third parade in 1950, annual parades were held on the country's independence day, ending in 1968. Citing financial concerns, it was then decided that the parade should only be held on special occasions. The last IDF parade thus took place in 1973, on Israel's 25th birthday.

The Israel Defense Forces still has weapon exhibitions country-wide on Independence Day, but they are stationary and have a limited scale. The first ever IDF parade in years was held on Jerusalem Day 1997 to mark the golden jubilee since independence and the 30th anniversary of the IDF capture of the Old City of Jerusalem.

Parade locations[edit]

MIM-23 Hawk anti-aircraft missiles in a military parade in Tel Aviv, 1965
Israeli soldiers armed with Uzis at Independence Day, 1958
Year Location
1948 Tel Aviv
1949 Tel Aviv
1950 Jerusalem
1951 Jerusalem
1952 Tel Aviv
1953 Haifa
1954 Ramla[2]
1955 Tel Aviv, Beersheba, Afula[3]
1956 Haifa
1957 Tel Aviv
1958 Jerusalem
1959 Tel Aviv
1960 Haifa
1961 Jerusalem
1962 Tel Aviv
1963 Haifa
1964 Beersheba[4]
1965 Tel Aviv
1966 Haifa
1967 Jerusalem
1968 Jerusalem
1973 Jerusalem


  1. ^ Man, Nadav (December 13, 2008). "1st IDF Parade from Behind the Lens". Ynetnews. Retrieved 2008-12-13.
  2. ^ At the request of David Ben-Gurion, the parade was held in an immigrant town, which was Ramla at the time.
  3. ^ In 1955, three parades were held in different locations, although the Tel Aviv parade was by far the largest and attracted an audience of over half a million. Afula's parade attracted 70,000 viewers, while Beersheba's, only 15,000.
  4. ^ The parade was meant to commence in Jerusalem, but the new prime minister, Levi Eshkol, feared a Jordanian uproar and moved it to Beersheba.