Israel's most important issues are sometimes ignored

Israel faces a whole host of burning issues that demand the full and immediate attention of the prime minister and his cabinet.

By SHLOMO MAITAL
September 5, 2017 13:19
Israel's most important issues are sometimes ignored

Simone Veil avec Golda Meir, en 1975. (photo credit: GPO)

On September 28, 1973, a band of Palestinian terrorists belonging to as-Sa’iqa took a group of Jews hostage on a train at the border of Czechoslovakia and Austria. As-Sa’iqa was a terrorist organization created and controlled by then Syrian president Hafez Assad. The Jews were Russian, heading for the Schoenau transit center in Austria, a former castle run by the Jewish Agency and assigned by the Austrian government as a transit camp for Russian Jews emigrating to Israel and the West. The hostages included a three-year-old child, a 73-year-old man and an ailing woman.

The terrorists’ ultimatum: Close the Schoenau camp or we will execute the hostages. Austria’s chancellor, Bruno Kreisky, acceded to the terrorists’ demands and announced he would close the camp. Kreisky, a socialist, was overtly antisemitic, apologetic toward former Nazis and had four of them in his cabinet.

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