March 17, 1950 – Jews kicked out of Iraq
The Jewish Agency for Palestine announced that it was prepared to receive 20,000 refugees from Iraq. This issue has taken on a great deal of urgency for Iraq’s 150,000 Jews, since the Baghdad government has given them a year to leave the country for Israel. As part of the price of departure, the Jews must basically leave behind most of their possessions and wealth for use by the Iraqi’s.
March 20, 1949 – Israeli forces take control of Ein Gedi
Named for a spring which flows from a height of 656 feet above the Dead Sea, Ein Gedi is an oasis on the western shore of the Dead Sea and considered one of the most important archaeological sites in the Judean Desert.
It is mentioned in the bible, and even during the Roman occupation and early church history, it was described as a large Jewish village.
Following the 1948 War of Independence, Israel launched a series of operations to secure certain strategic sites in order to strengthen and protect Israel’s border. One of these areas was Ein Gedi, on the western shore of the Dead Sea, strategic for military as well as tourism and industry.