Saturday, October 31, 2009

State Department Rescuing Yemeni Jews From Anti-Semitism

There aren't that many Jews left in Yemen. They were largely driven out of the country following Israel's independence in 1948. Those that remained were a tiny percentage of the population.

Rising anti-Semitism has forced the US State Department to intervene and help resettle those that remain in the United States and Israel.
According to the report, nearly 350 Yeminite Jews lived in the country before the operation. Those who have already moved to the US are likely to be joined by 100 more, while the remaining number will most likely move to Israel.

"If we had not done anything, we feared there would be bloodshed," Gregg Rickman, former State Department Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, told the paper.

In August, Israeli sources confirmed that the overwhelming majority of the final remnant of Yemen's ancient Jewish community was looking to leave the country.

"About 120 of the Yemeni Jews want to move to Israel, 100 want to move to the US," a source told the Jerusalem Post. "And between 20 and 30 want to stay."
Jewish ties to Yemen stretch back more than 2,000 years, and have a rich cultural heritage. Nearly the entire Jewish community in Yemen emigrated in 1948-1950 during Operation Magic Carpet because of pogroms and rioting that killed dozens of Jews in the wake of Israel's independence. Many settled in Israel, with some coming to the United States.

Now, the last remnants of the once flourishing population is coming to the US and Israel because the Islamists in Yemen simply refuse to accept the Jewish presence.

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