• Issue: April 2001
  • Designer: Moshe Pereg
  • Stamp Size: 30.8X30.8 mm
  • Plate no: 439 - One phosphor bar
  • Sheet of 15 stamps, Tabs: 5
  • Printers: Government Printers
  • Method of printing: Offset

Nahal in Hebrew is an abbreviation for "Noar Halutzi Lochem"-Pioneeing Fighting Youth.

The Nahal was founded during the War of Independence, as a battalion of the Gadna corps, when young boys and girls of 17 years of age were called up to the army as reserves. Afterthe Military Service Law was passed in the Knesset, it was publicized, in November 1949, that the army's high command gave an order thatthe Nahal would be an independent corps of the IDF. David Ben Gurion, Prime Minister and Defense Minister, said on the establishment of Nahal. "The concept for the foundation of the Nahal must be the educational and pioneering basis for the whole of the army. Service to the nation is not temporary but a mission of life."

The uniqueness of the Naha! was that the soldiers came from the pioneering youth movements and military service in a fighting unit was combined with agricultural training and settlement. This is expressed in the Nahal's symbol of the scythe and sword. The period of service for men and women soldiers was usually divided between military training with combat service and agricultural training in existing settlements and the setting up of new ones.

In 1958 the first Nahal settlements were established along the borders: Nahal Oz near the Gaza Strip, Gonen near Jordan on the borderwith Syria, and Yotvata near Eilat. Most of the settlements later became civilian villages. Since the establishment of the State of Israel, the Nahal soldiers fought in all the wars, defending the borders and carrying out routine security activities. In 1955 the Nahal became part of the Paratroopers Regiment and serving in this Corps was part ofthe service as a Nahal soldier. Afterthe Yom Kippur War, Nahal soldiers also served in the Armored Corps.

In recent years, not all Nahal soldiers are members of a settlement and other military careers are available to them. Already in the fifties the Nahal soldiers dealt with immigrant absorption and were involved in teaching Hebrew and social activities for new immigrants. Students who wanted to complete their school studies were also recruited into educational programs as part of the Nahal.

Still today, many Nahal soldiers volunteer for community work in development towns. 108 settlements around the country, mostly kibbutzim and moshavim (villages), originated as Nahal settlements which were set up to strengthen the country's borders. The special characteristics of the Nahal's activities have earned esteem and the Nahal was granted the Israel Prize for its unique contribution to the country and society.

The Monument for the Fallen Nahal Soldiers

The memorial site is situated in a large park, north of the town Pardes Hanna, and includes a monument, "Yad Labanim' building, amphitheater and park. The idea is that the site preserves the Nahal history and brings the Nahal close to the general public.

The layout of the site is based on the concept of the Nahal symbol: the scythe and sword.

The bridge, which symbolizes the sword. is the main pathway that connects the monumentwith the memorial hall which is in the center of the "Yad Labanim" building.

The monument, which symbolizes the scythe, is designed as an open tower and the names of the fallen soldiers are on the internal walls. An observation balcony is at the top of the tower overlooking the surrounding area. An open amphitheater, with a diameter of approximately 60 meters, is situated at the front of the tower. The memorial hall contains files of the fallen and a computerized system that both documents details of the fallen soldiers and preserves their heritage. The main building contains an auditorium and synagogue. There are plans for a museum that will give expression to the spirit of the Nahal, volunteering and settlement. The parkwill be both a memorial site for the Nahal - "Gan Gedudim" and a recreation area for the general public.

The memorial site is the initiative of The Association for the Fallen Nahal Soldiers, the Youth and Nahal Department of the Defense Ministry, the Nahal Headquarters and Pardes Hanna Local Council.

The architect of the site: the late Hanan Havron

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Memorial Day 2001 The Monument for the Fallen Nahal Soldiers