Archive for January 7, 2020

Operation Moses – How Israel Rescued the Jews of Ethiopia 

January 7, 2020

BBC Documentary

Operation Moses (Hebrew: מִבְצָע מֹשֶׁה, Mivtza Moshe) refers to the covert evacuation of Ethiopian Jews (known as the “Beta Israel” community or “Falashas”)[1] from Sudan during a civil war that caused a famine in 1984. Originally called Gur Aryeh Yehuda (“Cub of the Lion of Judah”) by Israelis, the United Jewish Appeal changed the name to “Operation Moses.”[2]

History
The operation, named after the biblical figure Moses, was a cooperative effort between the Israel Defense Forces, the Central Intelligence Agency, the United States embassy in Khartoum, mercenaries, and Sudanese state security forces.[3] Years after the operation completed, it was revealed that Sudanese Muslims and secret police of Sudan also played a role in facilitating the mass migration of Ethiopian Jews out of Sudan.[4] Operation Moses was the brainchild of then Associate U.S. Coordinator for Refugee Affairs, Richard Krieger. After receiving accounts of the persecution of Ethiopian Jews in the refugee camps, Krieger came up with the idea of an airlift and met with Mossad and Sudanese representatives to facilitate the Operation.[5][6]

After a secret Israeli cabinet meeting in November 1984, the decision was made to go forward with Operation Moses.[7] Beginning November 21, 1984, it involved the air transport by Trans European Airways of some 8,000 Ethiopian Jews from Sudan via Brussels to Israel, ending January 5, 1985.

Over those seven weeks, over 30 flights brought about 200 Ethiopian Jews at a time to Israel.[8] Trans European Airways had flown out of Sudan previously with Muslims making the pilgrimage to Mecca, so using TEA was a logical solution for this semi-covert operation because it would not provoke questions from the airport authorities.[9] Before this operation, there were approximately as few as 250 Ethiopian immigrants in Israel.[10] Thousands of Beta Israel had fled Ethiopia on foot for refugee camps in Sudan, a journey which usually took anywhere from two weeks to a month.[11] It is estimated as many as 4,000 died during the trek, due to violence and illness along the way. Sudan secretly allowed Israel to evacuate the refugees. Two days after the airlifts began, Jewish journalists wrote about “the mass rescue of thousands of Ethiopian Jews.”[12]

Operation Moses ended on Friday, January 5, 1985, after Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres held a press conference confirming the airlift while asking people not to talk about it. Sudan killed the airlift moments after Peres stopped speaking, ending it prematurely as the news began to reach their Arab allies.[13] Once the story broke in the media, Arab countries pressured Sudan to stop the airlift. Although thousands made it successfully to Israel, many children died in the camps or during the flight to Israel, and it was reported that their parents brought their bodies down from the aircraft with them.[14] Some 1,000 Ethiopian Jews were left behind, approximately 500 of whom were evacuated later in the U.S.-led Operation Joshua.[15] More than 1,000 so-called “orphans of circumstance” existed in Israel, children separated from their families still in Africa, until five years later Operation Solomon took 14,324 more Jews to Israel in 1991.[16] Operation Solomon in 1991 cost Israel $26 million to pay off the dictator-led government, while Operation Moses had been the least expensive of all rescue operations undertaken by Israel to aid Jews in other countries.[17]

Operation Dove Wing 2010; 2015-2020
On 14 November 2010, the Israeli cabinet approved a plan to allow an additional 8,000 Falash Mura to immigrate to Israel.[18][1]

On November 16, 2015, the Israeli cabinet unanimously voted in favor of allowing the last group of Falash Mura to immigrate over the next five years, but their acceptance will be conditional on a successful Jewish conversion process, according to the Interior Ministry.[19] In April 2016, they announced that a total of 10,300 people would be included in the latest round of Aliyah, over the following 5 years.[20][21]

As Iran prepares to bury Soleimani, crowds shout ‘Death to Israel’

January 7, 2020

Source: As Iran prepares to bury Soleimani, crowds shout ‘Death to Israel’ | The Times of Israel

Revolutionary Guard leader Salami threatens to ‘set ablaze’ US-backed places as burial ceremony gets underway in slain general’s hometown of Kerman

Iranian mourners gather for the burial of slain top general Qasem Soleimani in his hometown Kerman on January 7, 2020 (Atta KENARE / AFP)

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — The leader of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard threatened on Tuesday to “set ablaze” places supported by the United States over the killing of a top Iranian general in a US airstrike last week, sparking cries from the crowd of supporters of “Death to Israel!”

Hossein Salami made the pledge before a crowd of thousands gathered in a central square in Kerman, the hometown of the slain Gen. Qassem Soleimani. His vow mirrored the demands of top Iranian officials — from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to others — as well as supporters across the Islamic Republic, demanding retaliation against America for a slaying that’s drastically raised tensions across the Middle East.

Mourners in Kerman dressed in black carried posters bearing the image of Soleimani, a man whose slaying prompted Iran’s supreme leader to weep over his casket on Monday as a crowd said by police to be in the millions filled Tehran streets. Although there was no independent estimate, aerial footage and Associated Press journalists suggested a turnout of at least 1 million, and the throngs were visible on satellite images of Tehran taken Monday.

The outpouring of grief was an unprecedented honor for a man viewed by Iranians as a national hero for his work leading the Guard’s expeditionary Quds Force. The US blames him for the killing of American troops in Iraq and accused him of plotting new attacks just before his death Friday in a drone strike near Baghdad’s airport. Soleimani also led forces in Syria backing President Bashar Assad in a long war, and he also served as the point man for Iranian proxies in countries like Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.

His slaying already has pushed Tehran to abandon the remaining limits of its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers as his successor and others vow to take revenge. In Baghdad, the parliament has called for the expulsion of all American troops from Iraqi soil, something analysts fear could allow Islamic State militants to mount a comeback.

Chief of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Gen. Hossein Salami speaks in a ceremony to unveil new anti-US murals painted on the walls of former US embassy in Tehran, Iran, November 2, 2019. (Vahid Salemi/AP)

Soleimani’s remains and those of the others killed in the airstrike were brought to a central square in Kerman, a desert city surrounded by mountains that dates back to the days of the Silk Road where he will be buried later on Tuesday.

Salami praised Soleimani’s exploits and said as a martyr, he represented an even greater threat to Iran’s enemies.

“We will take revenge. We will set ablaze where they like,” Salami said, drawing the cries of “Death to Israel!”

Israel is a longtime regional foe of Iran.

According to a report on Tuesday by the semi-official Tasnim news agency, Iran has worked up 13 sets of plans for revenge for Soleimani’s killing. The report quoted Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, as saying that even the weakest among them would be a “historic nightmare” for the US. He declined to give any details,

“If the US troops do not leave our region voluntarily and upright, we will do something to carry their bodies horizontally out,” Shamkhani said.

Iran’s parliament, meanwhile, passed an urgent bill declaring the US military’s command at the Pentagon in Washington and those acting on its behalf “terrorists,” subject to Iranian sanctions. The measure appears to mirror a decision by President Donald Trump in April to declare the Revolutionary Guard a “terrorist organization.”

Screen capture from video shows Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei openly weeping as he leads a prayer over the coffin of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in Iraq in a US drone strike, during a funeral ceremony at the Tehran University campus, in Tehran, Iran, January 6, 2020. (Iran Press TV via AP)

The US Defense Department used the Guard’s designation as a terror organization in the US to support the strike that killed Soleimani. The decision by Iran’s parliament, done by a special procedure to speed the bill to law, comes as officials across the country threaten to retaliate for Soleimani’s killing.

Also Tuesday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the US had declined to issue him a visa to travel to New York for upocoming meetings at the United Nations. The US as the host of the UN headquarters is supposed to allow foreign officials to attend such meetings.

“They fear that someone comes to the US and reveals realities,” Zarif said and added: “The world is not limited to New York and you can talk to the American people from Tehran and we will do that.”

The US State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

 

Death to America… but not their cars

January 7, 2020

This made me chuckle.

http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/2020/01/mourners-shout-death-to-america-as.html

Qassem Soleimani’s funeral procession in Baghdad saw thousands of mourners shouting “Death to America!”

His coffin was in a Chevrolet, perhaps the most American car there is.

Social media in Arabic enjoyed this irony a great deal.