"Heroism Monument to the
Forgers of the Way to Jerusalem" / "Road of
Heroism Monument" medal (ND), 1948-49; minted in silver by "Aurum"
company; weight: 5.6g; size (medal + 1st ring): 28.5mm x 39mm.
The medal is of trapezoid shape and depicts what is known as the "Heroism Road Monument", with legend in English
"Monument to the Heroes of Jerusalem" on either side.
On the monument, in Hebrew at top is the Biblical quotation "If I
Forget Thee O Jerusalem May My Right Hand Forget its Cunning" with
the IDF's emblem above, and further below among the bricks the words
"Monument to the Forgers of the Way to Jerusalem" ("Gilad LePortzei
At left top is the number "17" inside the Hebrew
letter "Mem" (perhaps meaning "Factory 17" - "Mifal 17"). The
reverse is plain apart from the manufacturer's triangular stamp with
"Product of Israel" in Hebrew and the text "silver 835".
This is not an official Israeli Army medal, but it
may have been issued privately to those involved in either the
construction of the road to Jerusalem (which involved several foreign
volunteers in the IDF - "Machal" members), or in the erection of the
The erection of the monument
crowns a vital achievement of the time: the completion of a bypass
route to besieged Jerusalem, whose only route till then was the Latrun road (at that time, in spite of numerous Israeli attempts to
capture it, in Jordanian Arab Legion control).
The bypass originated as a plan of Col. David
Marcus, called the "Burma Road" which was a dust road, rocky
and winding and difficult to traverse, so a parallel wider road was
built further south between September and December 1948, known as
the "Road of Heroism" ("Kvish HaGvura").
The creation of the road was vital to Jewish Jerusalem's survival
and so - in national spirit - to all of Israel, as evidenced by the
stature of the event: the Chief of Staff and the Prime
Minister/Minister of Defense David Ben-Gurion attended the
foundation of the monument's keystone (7 Dec. 1948), and in his
address said "The road we are inaugurating today is the embodiment
of the apex of wartime effort for the homeland and independence
because by it is connected the most tragic as well as the most
heroic battle since we were forced to stand at the gates before our
numerous enemies - the battle for Jerusalem".
The monument is one of a series now maintained by the Engineers
Corps of the IDF.
More info in Hebrew on this road and the
With thanks to the seller of this item: