Ori Orr

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Ori Orr
אורי אור
Ori or.JPG
Faction represented in the Knesset
1992–1999Labor Party
Personal details
Born (1939-04-22) 22 April 1939 (age 83)
Kfar Haim, Mandatory Palestine
Military service
Allegiance Israel
Years of service1957–1986 or 1987

Ori Orr (Hebrew: אורי אור, born 22 April 1939) is an Israeli retired general and politician. During his service with the Israel Defense Forces, he headed the Central and Northern Commands. Afterward, he was elected to the Knesset twice for the Labor Party. He chaired the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee and was appointed Deputy Minister of Defence.

Early life[edit]

Orr was born in Kfar Haim, Mandatory Palestine, in 1939. He was awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science & History from Tel Aviv University.

Military career[edit]

He was drafted into the Israel Defense Forces in 1957, serving with the Armored Corps. During the Six-Day War, then Captain Orr commanded the Recon Company of the 7th Brigade,[1] which advanced through the northern shore of the Sinai Peninsula. In the War of Attrition, he commanded an armored battalion in the Sinai and the Jordan Valley. He was promoted to lieutenant colonel in August 1973, becoming the commander of the newly formed 679th (reserve) Armored Brigade, which he led during the Yom Kippur War. His Centurion-equipped unit played a significant role in stemming the Syrian attack in the Golan Heights. One of the first reserve units to arrive, it helped save the Israeli headquarters at Nafakh from being overrun.[2][3][4] Northern Front commander General Yitzhak Hofi stated, "Ori saved us today."[5]

Following the Yom Kippur War, Orr was assigned to command the 7th Brigade. In 1976, he was made commander of an armored division on the Golan Heights, with the rank of brigadier general, and later served as Chief of Staff of Central Command. In 1981, he was promoted to general, heading Central Command between 1981 and 1983 and Northern Command between 1983 and 1986,[6] partly during the First Lebanon War.

Orr retired from the army after 30 years of service.

Political and business career[edit]

He served as the Director General of the Jewish National Fund from 1987 until 1992. He was a member of the board of directors of Israel Aircraft Industries between 1988 and 1991 and chairman of the board between 1999 and 2003.[7]

He joined the Labor Party, serving on its campaign staff during the 1988 elections. In the 1992 elections, he was elected to the Knesset, serving as chairperson of the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee.[6][5] After Shimon Peres formed his government following Prime Minister Rabin's assassination, Orr was made Deputy Minister of Defence.[6][5] He retained his seat in the 1996 elections, while his party was in the opposition, and lost his seat in the 1999 elections. His political career came to an abrupt end when "impolitic remarks" about Sephardi Jews were attributed to him in an article in Haaretz by journalist Daniel Ben Simon.[5]

Orr is the author of two biographical books: Follow Me (1994) (Hebrew: אחרי), and These are My Brothers (2003) (Hebrew: אלה האחים שלי).

Personal life[edit]

He is married and has three children.


  1. ^ Pressfield, Steven (6 May 2014). The Lion's Gate: On the Front Lines of the Six Day War. Penguin Publishing Group. p. 161. ISBN 9780698163973. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  2. ^ Abraham Rabinovich (7 May 2005). "The Golan's savior". The Jerusalem Post.
  3. ^ Dunstan, Simon (17 November 2009). Centurion Vs T-55: Yom Kippur War 1973. Osprey Publishing. p. 68. ISBN 9781846033698. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  4. ^ Asher, Dani (2016). Inside Israel's Northern Command: The Yom Kippur War on the Syrian Border. University Press of Kentucky. p. 135. ISBN 9780813167657.
  5. ^ a b c d Abraham Rabinovich (30 July 2010). "Our McChrystal? Revisiting the case of Ori Orr". The Jerusalem Post.
  6. ^ a b c Ori Orr on the Knesset website
  7. ^ "General (Res.) Ori Orr is Appointed Chairman of the Board of Israel Aircraft Industries". Israel Aircraft Industries. 28 October 1999.

External links[edit]