Amir Drori
Amir Drori was an Israeli general, founder and the first director general of the Israel Antiquities Authority
Israel Antiquities Authority
The Israel Antiquities Authority is an independent Israeli governmental authority responsible for enforcing the 1978 Law of Antiquities. The IAA regulates excavation and conservation, and promotes research...


Military career

Amir Drori was born in Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv , officially Tel Aviv-Yafo , is the second most populous city in Israel, with a population of 404,400 on a land area of . The city is located on the Israeli Mediterranean coastline in west-central Israel. It is the largest and most populous city in the metropolitan area of Gush Dan, with...

 in 1937 and graduated from the IDF's Junior Command Preparatory School in Haifa
Haifa is the largest city in northern Israel, and the third-largest city in the country, with a population of over 268,000. Another 300,000 people live in towns directly adjacent to the city including the cities of the Krayot, as well as, Tirat Carmel, Daliyat al-Karmel and Nesher...

. He was drafted into the Israel Defence Forces in 1955, where he joined the Golani infantry brigade
Golani Brigade
The Golani Brigade is an Israeli infantry brigade that is subordinated to the 36th Division and traditionally associated with the Northern Command. Its symbol is a green tree on a yellow background, and its soldiers wear a brown beret. It is one of the most highly decorated infantry units in the...

. During the 1956 Suez Crisis Drori led a demolition team and participated in fighting in Rafah
Rafah , also known as Rafiah, is a Palestinian city in the southern Gaza Strip. Located south of Gaza, Rafah's population of 71,003 is overwhelmingly made up of Palestinian refugees. Rafah camp and Tall as-Sultan form separate localities. Rafah is the district capital of the Rafah Governorate...

 and the Sinai. He was awarded the Medal of Courage
Medal of Courage
The Medal of Courage is an Israeli military decoration. The medal is awarded for carrying out acts of gallantry at the risk of life, during combat duty. The medal was established in 1970 by act of law in the Knesset....

 for his part in the Israeli raid on the Syrian village of Tawafiq in 1960.

During the 1967 Six Day War Drori served as deputy commander of Golani's 51st Battalion and took part in fighting on the Golan Heights. During the subsequent War of Attrition
War of Attrition
The international community and both countries attempted to find a diplomatic solution to the conflict. The Jarring Mission of the United Nations was supposed to ensure that the terms of UN Security Council Resolution 242 would be observed, but by late 1970 it was clear that this mission had been...

 he commanded Golani's 13th Battlation, participating in fighting on the Golan Heights, Beit She'an Valley, the Jordan Valley
Jordan Valley (Middle East)
The Jordan Valley forms part of the larger Jordan Rift Valley. It is 120 kilometers long and 15 kilometers wide, where it runs from Lake Tiberias in the north to northern Dead Sea in the south. It runs for an additional 155 kilometer south of the Dead Sea to Aqaba, an area also known as Wadi...

 and along the Suez Canal
Suez Canal
The Suez Canal , also known by the nickname "The Highway to India", is an artificial sea-level waterway in Egypt, connecting the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea. Opened in November 1869 after 10 years of construction work, it allows water transportation between Europe and Asia without navigation...

. Between 1970 and 1972 he served as the chief operations officer of Israel's Southern Command, under Ariel Sharon
Ariel Sharon
Ariel Sharon is an Israeli statesman and retired general, who served as Israel’s 11th Prime Minister. He has been in a permanent vegetative state since suffering a stroke on 4 January 2006....


In 1972 Drori was given command of the Golani Brigade, which he was to lead through the intensive fighting of the 1973 Yom Kippur War
Yom Kippur War
The Yom Kippur War, Ramadan War or October War , also known as the 1973 Arab-Israeli War and the Fourth Arab-Israeli War, was fought from October 6 to 25, 1973, between Israel and a coalition of Arab states led by Egypt and Syria...

. The brigade participated in the efforts to halt the Syrians on the Golan Heights, as well as in the battles for Mount Hermon and the Israeli push into Syria. He was wounded during the Third Battle of Mount Hermon, in which his troops recaptured the Israeli post held by Syrian commandos, but returned to lead the brigade during the fighting preceding the final disengagement agreements of May 1974.

In 1976 Drori was appointed to lead the IDF's 36th Armored Division
36th Division (IDF)
The Israel Defense Forces 36th Armor Division, also known as the Ga'ash Formation , is the largest regular-service armor division in the IDF. It is subordinate to the Northern Regional Command....

. A year later he received the rank of Aluf
Aluf is the term used for General and Admiral in the Israel Defense Forces . In addition to the Aluf rank itself, there are four other ranks which are derivatives of the word...

 and was appointed head of the Operations Directorate's operations department. He went on to command the IDF's training department before given command of Israel's Northern Command in 1981. He played a significant role in the 1982 Lebanon War
1982 Lebanon War
The 1982 Lebanon War , , called Operation Peace for Galilee by Israel, and later known in Israel as the Lebanon War and First Lebanon War, began on 6 June 1982, when the Israel Defense Forces invaded southern Lebanon...

 (Operation Peace for Galilee), leading Israeli forces to the gates of Beirut
Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

 through fighting with both the Syrian Army
Syrian Army
The Syrian Army, officially called the Syrian Arab Army, is the land force branch of the Syrian Armed Forces. It is the dominant military service of the four uniformed services, controlling the senior most posts in the armed forces, and has the greatest manpower, approximately 80 percent of the...

 and the Palestinian Liberation Organization. His conduct during the Sabra and Shatila massacre
Sabra and Shatila massacre
The Sabra and Shatila massacre took place in the Sabra and Shatila Palestinian refugee camps in Beirut, Lebanon between September 16 and September 18, 1982, during the Lebanese civil war. Palestinian and Lebanese civilians were massacred in the camps by Christian Lebanese Phalangists while the camp...

 was investigated by the Kahan Commission
Kahan Commission
The Kahan Commission , formally known as the Commission of Inquiry into the Events at the Refugee Camps in Beirut, was established by the Israeli government on 28 September 1982, to investigate the Sabra and Shatila Massacre . The Kahan Commission was chaired by the President of the Supreme Court,...

 which saw no reason to make any recommendations against him. Drori served at Northern Command for another year before leaving in December 1983. He spent the next year studying in the US.

Drori returned to Israel in 1984 and was assigned command of IDF ground forces, later went on to head the IDF's Operations Directorate, and in October 1986 became the Deputy Chief of the General Staff. He retired from the IDF in 1988 following his failure to secure the post of Chief of the General Staff.

Civilian career

Between 1961 and 1964 Drori had studied Archaeology
Archaeology, or archeology , is the study of human society, primarily through the recovery and analysis of the material culture and environmental data that they have left behind, which includes artifacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes...

 at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, participating in several digs, including that of Yigael Yadin
Yigael Yadin
Yigael Yadin on 21 March 1917, died 28 June 1984) was an Israeli archeologist, politician, and the second Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces.-Early life and military career:...

 at Masada
Masada is the name for a site of ancient palaces and fortifications in the South District of Israel, on top of an isolated rock plateau, or horst, on the eastern edge of the Judean Desert, overlooking the Dead Sea. Masada is best known for the violence that occurred there in the first century CE...

. Upon his retirement from the IDF he was appointed head of the Israeli Ministry of Education
Ministry of Education (Israel)
The Israeli Ministry of Education is the branch of government charged with overseeing public education institutions in Israel. The political head of the department is the Minster of Education, currently Gideon Sa'ar....

's Department of Antiquities. Under his guidance and leadership the department was expanded and restructured, in 1990 becoming the Israel Antiquities Authority
Israel Antiquities Authority
The Israel Antiquities Authority is an independent Israeli governmental authority responsible for enforcing the 1978 Law of Antiquities. The IAA regulates excavation and conservation, and promotes research...

 (IAA) with Drori as its first director general.

Drori's tenure with the IAA was plagued by clashes with Ultra-Orthodox elements which considered archaeological exploration of possible burial sites as an affront to Judaism. Ultra-Orthodox political parties repeatedly campaigned for his dismissal, going as far as to threaten abandoning the governing coalition unless they were given control of tomb excavations. He occasionally received death threats and was even reputed to have been the target of a Pulsa diNura
Pulsa diNura
Pulsa diNura or Pulsa Denoura. is a purportedly kabbalistic ceremony in which the angels of destruction are invoked to block heavenly forgiveness of the subject’s sins, causing all the curses named in the Bible to befall him resulting in his death. However, the Torah prohibits to pray that...

, a kabbalistic ceremony supposedly intended to bring about the death of an individual.

Despite weathering these challenges, Drori quit his post in 2000 after having already secured its extension.


Amir Drori died on March 12, 2005, after suffering a heart attack during a hiking trip in the Negev
The Negev is a desert and semidesert region of southern Israel. The Arabs, including the native Bedouin population of the region, refer to the desert as al-Naqab. The origin of the word Neghebh is from the Hebrew root denoting 'dry'...

. The IAA excavations at the Roman theatre
Roman theatre (structure)
The characteristics of Roman to those of the earlier Greek theatres due in large part to its influence on the Roman triumvir Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus. Much of the architectural influence on the Romans came from the Greeks, and theatre structural design was no different from other buildings...

 of Tiberias have been named in his honour.

External links

  • The Beautiful Israeli by Caroline Glick
    Caroline Glick
    Caroline Glick is an American-Israeli journalist for Makor Rishon and is the deputy managing editor of The Jerusalem Post. She is also the Senior Fellow for Middle East Affairs of the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Security Policy.-Life:...

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.