Entebbe still imprinted on Israel’s psyche

  • BIBI Africa
Israeli PM Netanyahu, pictured, started his 3-day, 4-state Africa visit at Entebbe where his brother died exactly 40 years ago. Don't miss the gaffe-filled & embarrassing speech by Pres. Moseveni which Israeli radio cut short
by ANT KATZ | Jul 06, 2016

ABOVE: In his gaffe-filled and embarrassing speech Moseveni also referred to the fact that “baby Jesus was hidden from Herod in the bulrushes in Egypt in 4 AD

Netanyahu used his attendance at a ceremony to mark 40 years since the famous “Entebbe Raid” in Kampala as the springboard for a four-nation East African visit. But the Entebbe ceremony was not without drama as that country’s President Yoweri Museveni, continuously referred to Israel as Palestine during his speech. Other “untrue historical facts” were equally embarrassing.

Many Ugandans have been openly tweeting about who could have written his speech and predicting that heads would roll for the mistake. Tweets in Israel, on the other hand, also lashed out at the gaffe, saying Museveni “rambled” and that his speech was “bizarre”. Israeli radio cut off the speech before it finished.


RIGHT: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu walks with Uganda President Yoweri Museveni on Monday after arriving to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Operation Entebbe at Uganda’s Entebbe Airport

The Entebbe Raid saw then-Ugandan leader Idi Amin hosting German and Palestinian terrorists and their 100 hijacked Israeli passengers at the airport in Kampala. Israeli commandos rescued all-but-one of the hostages in a daring night-time raid.

Netanyahu laid a wreath at a plaque marking the rescue. His older brother, who commanded one of the assault groups of 29 elite commandos, was the only Israeli killed in the raid.

The plaque had been originally unveiled by Netanyahu himself in 2006 (in between his two stints as Israel’s prime minister). It marks the spot where Lt-Col Yonatan (Yoni) Netanyahu, was shot and killed. Rabbi Moshe Silberhaft of the African Jewish Congress (AJC) also attended that unveiling.

Bibi Africa Yoni and grave"Israel is coming back to Africa; Africa is coming back to Israel," said Netanyahu on Monday. “We were powerless no more,” he said, referring to the raid on July 4, 1976.


Returning to 2016, Netanyahu said as he embarked on his trip on Sunday: “The African continent constitutes vast potential for Israel.” He will also hold meetings with the leaders of Ethiopia, Kenya and Rwanda.

The Israeli leader seeks East African allies both to improve the already thriving trade and tourism between their countries, but also to bolster political support for Israel in international forums.

The prime minister is being accompanied by some 80 Israeli businessmen in order to further cultivate trade ties. He will also address the Ethiopian parliament.

At the Entebbe commemoration, Netanyahu also held scheduled meetings with the leaders of Zambia, Tanzania and South Sudan - as well as some unscheduled meetings. Netanyahu is the first Israeli prime minister to visit sub-Saharan Africa since 1987.

A delegation from the South African-based African Jewish Congress, led by its president, Ann Harris and spiritual head Rabbi Moshe Silberhaft, also attended. They left Uganda on Tuesday for Kenya, from where Rabbi Silberhaft told Jewish Report that there had been “a large IDF military presence” at Entebbe.

“The terminal building where the hostages were held and then rescued is being converted to a museum displaying this historic event in Jewish history,” he said on Tuesday. One of the four Lockheed C-130 Hercules aircraft used in the rescue was on display at Monday’s event. Two Boeing 747s had also been used in the raid.

Ann Harris told Jewish Report that “the AJC was privileged to be invited to attend the commemoration” by invitation of the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Africa Desk with which the AJC works closely.

 The AJC delegation consisted of its CEO, Rabbi Silberhaft, Ann Harris and AJC Vice-President Geoff Ramokgadi. See more on SAJR website.

  • In his gaffe-filled and embarrassing speech - see it at www.sajr.co.za - Moseveni also referred to the fact that “baby Jesus was hidden from Herod in the bulrushes in Egypt in 4 AD. 


  1. 2 nat cheiman 06 Jul
    Notwithstanding the ignoramus, Museveni, I am proud of Israel
  2. 1 Jp 06 Jul
    Agreed his speech writer made a few silly mistakes, not acceptable at such a level - but listen what Museveni says how he talked back at Ahmanheesbad!! (the hoodlum) I interpret it as overall a supportive speech of Pales..- I mean Israel (Palestine in its Roman sense?)


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