The Ransom of the Jews: The Story of Extraordinary Secret Bargain Between Romania and Israel

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9781566635622: The Ransom of the Jews: The Story of Extraordinary Secret Bargain Between Romania and Israel

After 1948, the 370,000 surviving Jews of Romania became one of the main sources of immigration for the new state of Israel. With the exception of a period in the early 1950s, almost all Romanian Jews left their homeland in several waves to settle in Palestine and Israel. Behind Romania's decision to allow its Jews to leave were practical economic and political reasons: Israel paid for them, and Romania wanted influence in the Middle East. The trade satisfied both states and is still considered a highly confidential matter. In The Ransom of the Jews, Radu Ioanid of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum traces the intriguing story of this secret exchange. Drawing upon restricted archival records and interviews with agents and others directly involved in the operation, he describes how Israel―not without second thoughts―traded cash, agricultural products, and sometimes political influence to ensure the emigration of Jews from Romania. The price was $2,000 to $3,300 per head, and also involved trade and loan considerations. This privileged relationship between the two countries allowed Israel after 1967 to maintain in Bucharest its only embassy in the East European Communist bloc. It also permitted Nicolae Ceausescu, the anti-Semitic Romanian president, to emerge as a mediator in the Middle East peace process, in which he hoped to use Israel to improve his own relations with the United States. In 1978, during the Jimmy Carter administration, Mr. Ioanid reveals, Washington learned of the sale of Romanian Jews to Israel but turned its eyes for reasons ostensibly related to its policies toward the Soviet Union. In all, some 235,000 Jews emigrated from Romania to Israel under the agreement, which ended with the fall of the Ceausescu regime.

Les informations fournies dans la section « Synopsis » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

About the Author :

Radu Ioanid is director of international archival programs at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. Born in Bucharest, he was educated in Romania and in France, and now lives in Bethesda, Maryland. He has also written The Holocaust in Romania and wrote the Introduction to Mihail Sebastian's acclaimed Journal 1935–1944, both published by Ivan R. Dee.

Review :

This is one of those rare books that is both an invaluable primary source and an occasion for profound thought. (Andrei Codrescu, NPR commentator, professor of English, Louisiana State University, author of The Hole in the Flag: an Exile’s Story of Return and Revolution)

Carefully documented.... This work is essential for academic collections as a supplement to any histories of Romania. (Library Journal)

...Intriguing story... (Forbes)

...Important as an official report... (Marina Constantinoiu Jurnalul National)

Ioanid doesn't shy away from telling us who Ceausescu really was.... Ioanid does a good job explaining th[e] context. (Gal Beckerman Forward)

The book is a shattering document, a story superbly told, which makes it a non-stop read. (Baruch Cohen Montreal Gazette)

“A fascinating story, written by the energetic and knowledgeable Radu Ioanid. The book is a shattering document, a story superbly told, as well as an opportunity to learn about the vicious character of the anti-Semitic face of Romania's Communist leaders. It should be translated into Hebrew, so that the second and third generations of Romanian Jews in Israel, will know how their grandparents and parents were treated by their “homeland.”” (Baruch Cohen Ynetnews.Com)

Ioanid writes with verve, enlivening his narrative with generous quotations from people he has interviewed, from all sides, who were directly involved in the deals, and from memoir literature. There are several comic cameos, such as the temporary loss in Zurich Airport of a suitcase containing $1 million in ransom money. But, as Andrei Codrescu, who was among the Jews ransomed by Israel, writes in his endorsement, Radu Ioanid's finely researched book highlights the ambiguity of a morally reprehensible policy that resulted paradoxically in freedom for many. (Dennis Deletant, University College, London and Georgetown University Times Literary Supplement)

A concise chronicle.... This book tells an exciting story of daring, steadfast commitment to the rescue of entrapped Jews... (Jewish Book World)

An important book.... Recommended. (J. Fischel, Millersville University CHOICE)

Provides the first comprehensive treatment of the most vexing problem of twentieth-century Israeli-Romanian realtions and its international ramifications. (Dov. B. Lungu International History Review)

A remarkable and engrossing read...[The Ransom of the Jews] will give readers an excellent perspective. (Norm Goldman Bookpleasures.com)

Fascinating reconstruction...sheds valuable light on this complicated and shameful chapter in the history of Communist Romania. (DRAGOS PETRESCU Journal of Cold War Studies)

Les informations fournies dans la section « A propos du livre » peuvent faire référence à une autre édition de ce titre.

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Description du livre Ivan R Dee, Inc, United States, 2005. Hardback. État : New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. After 1948, the 370,000 surviving Jews of Romania became one of the main sources of immigration for the new state of Israel. Behind Romania s decision to allow its Jews to leave were practical economic and political reasons: Israel paid for them, and Romania wanted influence in the Middle East. The trade satisfied both states and is still considered a highly confidential matter. In The Ransom of the Jews, Radu Ioanid of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum traces the intriguing story of this secret exchange. N° de réf. du libraire ANB9781566635622

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