Learn about historic Entebbe raid Monday | VailDaily.com

Learn about historic Entebbe raid Monday

Daily staff report

VAIL — Chabad Jewish Center of Vail will host a presentation on Monday by Sassy Reuven, a veteran of the Israel Defense Special Operation Forces. During the terror-filled years of 1973-1976, Sassy served in that unit’s elite “Red Beret” paratrooper unit. He participated in several covert operations in Israel’s struggle against Arab terrorism.

In July of 1976, Reuven participated in the famed Entebbe counter-terrorist hostage-rescue mission, code named “Operation Thunderbolt,” flying thousands of miles over hostile territory to rescue Jewish hostages being held by terrorists in Uganda.

A week earlier, on June 27, an Air France plane was hijacked by members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the German Revolutionary Cells, then flown to Entebbe, the main airport in Uganda. More than 100 Israeli and Jewish passengers remained as hostages and were threatened with death.

Israeli transport planes carried 100 commandos more than 2,500 miles to Uganda for the rescue operation, which took place at night. The operation lasted 90 minutes, and 102 hostages were rescued. Five Israeli commandos were wounded and one, unit commander Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu, was killed. All the hijackers, three hostages and 45 Ugandan soldiers were killed.

Reuven will share his personal experience from the moment he was called to duty, including the preparation for the mission, landing in Uganda and completing the mission.

Participate in The Longevity Project

The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.

Reuven’s story is Israel’s story: of courage, endurance, defiance and a willingness to sacrifice it all for the right to live in your homeland in freedom.

Reuven will share his story at The Arrabelle in an evening coordinated and sponsored by the Chabad Jewish Center of Vail and co-sponsored by the Vail Daily and the Arrabelle Hotel.

Tickets and more information is available at http://www.JewishVail.com or by calling 970-476-7887. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. Sponsorships are available for $180.

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