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Sunday, August 06, 2017

Exodus 1947~70th Annivesary Memorial Ceremony

Picture "Apples of Gold" © Jerusalem Vistas/Israel Vision
Remembrance of key events in the modern history of Israel is a powerful way to preserve their significance. 

In 1947 the Jewish Underground came into possession of an old steam boat which they refitted with the hope of breaking the blockade the British had erected around Mandated Palestine. On board were 4,500 sick and battered Holocaust survivors.

In June 1947 the "Exodus" was intercepted and rammed on both sides of it’s hull by British battle ships. When they could not sink the boat they boarded with rifles and clubs to battle the unarmed refugees. In the end, three were killed and more than one hundred and fifty were injured.

The sick, and injured were removed from the Exodus in Haifa’s port and shipped off to camps in Cyprus. The British sent the rest to Hamburg, Germany, where they were put back into the concentration camps they had fled. Many died in the process. The British have never apologized. It was a tragic event, that added strength to the longing for, and creation of the new State of Israel on 14 May 1948.

Seven and a half weeks after Jay’s surgery, he and Meridel enjoyed their first all day outing as the invited guests of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ), for the unveiling of a memorial to the "Exodus 47".

Exactly 70 years later, the memorial, held in the port of Haifa Harbour, was highlighted by the unveiling of a sculpture and historic marker in memory of the courageous passengers.

This touching ceremony was attended by some of the remaining survivors, now in their late 70's to early 90's. Also attending was Natan Sharansky, a "refusenik", who in 2009 was elected to the chair of the executive of the Jewish Agency for Israel, by the Jewish Agency Board of Governors.

We must never forget the past and those who suffered and fought for the freedoms we have today!

Memorial Ceremony of the Exodus 1947