Let My People Go


In the first month of 1982, demonstrators held signs in front of the Rhode Island State House in support of the minority Jewish population that faced oppression in their native Ethiopia and neighboring African countries. What began as an obscure humanitarian crisis sparked global alarm, largely thanks to rallies like this one. Though this group of demonstrators couldn’t have known it – as they sang “Am Yisrael Chai” in the winter air – a historic emigration was in the making: Starting in 1984, 8,000 Jewish Ethiopians were transported to Israel as part of Operation Moses.