Ahmed Hamdi

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Ahmed Hamdi
Born 20 May 1929
Died 14 October 1973
Suez Canal, Egypt.
Nationality Egyptian
File:Ahmed Hamdi Tunnel - West entry.jpg
West entry of Ahmed Hamdi-Tunnel which undergoes the Suez Canal (Egypt)

Ahmed Hamdi (20 May 1929 - 14 October 1973) was an Egyptian engineer. He also was a general of the third army of Egypt, during the Yom Kippur war. He was killed while crossing the Suez Canal with his soldiers and was awarded the Sinai star posthumously.[1][2]

He was a graduate of the Faculty of Engineering at Cairo University. In 1951 he joined the Egyptian Air Force, and then transferred to the engineering force in 1954. He travelled to the Soviet Union, where he passed a training for leaders at the High Military Academy Frunze. In the war of 1956 he was known as "the pure hand", because he detonated thousands of land-bombs, before they exploded. He exploded the El Ferdan Railway Bridge, in order to prevent Israeli soldiers from passing upon it.

He had installed watching points upon steel towers, on the western bank of the Suez Canal, beneath the trees, in order to watch Israeli troops' movements, while there were no means or sand hills, to permit this watching. He had chosen the location of these towers himself.

In 1971, he was in charge of the preparation of a group of soldiers, who had to install a bridge which will assure the safe transfer of the 3rd army to the other side of the Suez Canal. Finally, he found out the idea of throwing highly pressured water on the Bar-Lev wall, in order to destroy it.

He was the leader of the engineering group that was in charge of executing the engineering works for the 3rd army, and while the groups were the most important in Yom Kippur (6 October War).

In 1971, he was in charge of preparing a group of troops to install a new bridge, that would assure the safe transfer of the 3rd army, to the other side of the canal. He had also helped in the development of the Soviet production bridges, in order to adapt them to the Suez Canal situation. In fact, he enhanced the old Russian bridges deployment from 12 hours to 4 hours.

He was wounded while the Egyptian army was crossing the canal, where he had saved one of the bridges. He was later shot and killed during the same operation. He had refused to stay in the command center with the other generals in order to be with his officers and soldiers.

Egypt had honored him by dedicating to his name, Sinai Star first rank, this prize is the highly military prize in Egypt. His death day was chosen to be Engineer Day, and president Mohamed Anwar El-Sadat named a tunnel that links Sinai to the rest of the Egyptian land after him, it's called the Ahmed Hamdi Tunnel.

His children were 13, 10 and 6 when he died.


  1. الشهيد أحمد حمدى, موقع حرب أكتوبر
  2. أوسمة الأبطال, إبراهيم خليل إبراهيم