On March 5, 1949, Israel launched Operation Ovda, the last military maneuver of the war. On March 10, the Israeli Defense Forces reached the shores of the Red Sea at Umm Rashrash, west of Aqaba (the biblical Elath), and captured it without a battle. The Negev Brigade and Golani Brigade took part in the operation. A makeshift flag created from a white sheet inscribed with ink was raised by Avraham Adan, company commander of the 8th Battalion of the Negev Brigade.
The improvised flag was made on the order of Negev Brigade commander Nahum Sarig, when it was discovered that the brigade did not have an Israeli flag on hand. The soldiers found a sheet, drew two ink stripes, and sewed on a Star of David torn off a first-aid kit.
In Eilat, a bronze sculpture by Israeli sculptor Bernard Reder commemorates the event. The photo of the raising of the Ink Flag, taken by the soldier Micha Perry, bears resemblance to the raising of the American flag at Iwo Jima.
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