Yad La-Shiryon

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The Armored Corps Memorial Site and Museum at Latrun
A Mandate era Tegart fort serves as the main building of Yad La-Shiryon.
Yad La-Shiryon is located in Jerusalem
Yad La-Shiryon
Location of museum
Established1982 (1982)
LocationLatrun, Israel
Coordinates31°50′17″N 34°58′50″E / 31.838056°N 34.980417°E / 31.838056; 34.980417
TypeMilitary Museum

Yad La-Shiryon (officially: The Armored Corps Memorial Site and Museum at Latrun; Hebrew: יד לשריון) is Israel's official memorial site for fallen soldiers from the armored corps, as well as one of the most diverse tank museums in the world.[1] The cornerstone for Yad La-Shiryon was laid on December 14, 1982 (1982-12-14).

The site was created through the initiative of veteran officers of the armored corps. The outdoor display includes 110 tanks and other armored fighting vehicles, both Israeli and captured enemy examples including the Merkava and T-34, T-54, T-55, T-62 tanks, as well as vehicles obtained or purchased from allied nations specifically for diversifying the collection like the German Leopard tank or the only T-72 on display in Israel. Other notable items include: an M4 Sherman tank mounted high atop a former British water tower; a collection of mobile bridges constructed by the IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) which can be carried by tanks and erected while under fire; captured enemy vehicles, most of which Israel has modified and updated; a tank with a blown up gun; and a long, engraved commemorative wall bearing the names of Armored Corps soldiers killed in defense of the country.

Memorial site[edit]

The main building, a Mandate-era Tegart fortress, houses a library with a publicly accessible computerized record of every fallen Israeli tank soldier, and a synagogue. The deeply pocked outer walls of the fort are a reminder of the building's wartime past and its use by the Arab Legion. The tower of the fortress has been converted into a Tower of Tears by Israeli artist, Danny Karavan. The inside of the tower is covered by steel taken from a tank and water circulating from a pool underneath the installation trickles down the walls.[2]

The museum also features a large amphitheater, an auditorium, and has photos, poetry, paintings and cartoons on display. Screenings are held regularly, showing both historical film footage and more recent tributes to Israelis injured and fallen.

The Wall of Names, erected outside, displays the names of all the soldiers from the Armored Corps killed in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and later wars.

Tank on the tower[edit]

The Sherman tank on the tower

The most famous sight at Yad La-Shiryon is most likely that of a tank on top of a tower, which serves as the museum's logo. In 1979, by decision of late Major General (Ret.) Moshe Peled, the tank was hoisted on top of a tower on the site, which was originally used as a water tower. The tank that was chosen is an American M4 Sherman, one of the first tanks that fought in the service of the Israel Defense Forces. Since the water tower was only designed to support 25 tons and the tank weighed 34 tons, both the engine and transmission gears had to be removed.

Tank collection[edit]

Yad La-shiryon is famous worldwide for its unique and diverse collection of tanks and armored vehicles. There are over a hundred different vehicles in the collection.[1]

Some of the tanks and military vehicles included are:

M551 Sheridan Light Tank In Latrun


Latrun tanks
Israeli Merkava III at Yad La-Shiryon
"Eyal observation post" Israeli adaptation of American M4 Sherman at Yad La-Shiryon
American M42 Duster at Yad La-Shiryon
French Renault R35 light tank at Yad La-Shiryon
British Alvis Saladin at Yad La-Shiryon
British FV4101 Charioteer tank at Yad La-Shiryon
German Panzer IV at Yad La-Shiryon
BTR-50 based Medevac vehicle at Yad La-Shiryon
Captured Egyptian IS-3 heavy tank in Yad la-Shiryon
Captured Egyptian T-100 at Yad La-Shiryon






Allied Forces Monument[edit]

Allied Forces Monument at Yad La-Shiryon

A monument was constructed as a tribute to the Allies of World War II, led by the United States, Great Britain and The Soviet Union. The monument is composed of a rock pile, on top of which the three main battle tanks that served in the armies of the Allied Forces on different fronts: a British Cromwell, an American Sherman, and the Soviet T-34. The monument is surrounded by the flags of 19 countries and organizations that actively participated in the struggle, including the flag of the Jewish Brigade, which fought within the ranks of the British army. It is being reconstructed as of December 2011.

Museum of Armored Corps History[edit]

The museum includes several exhibits dedicated to the history of armored combat in general, including:

  • Model room with dozens of tanks
  • Full-scale models of:
  • Stamp collection, featuring tanks and other armored vehicles

Other features[edit]

The site also has a large outdoor theater where various ceremonies and performances take place, as it is one of the largest theaters in the country and centrally located. There is also a birdwatching facility equipped with a radar to track migratory birds.

Other tank museums[edit]


External links[edit]

Media related to Yad la-Shiryon Museum at Wikimedia Commons