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The Forgotten Refugees (Video On Demand)

The Plight of Jewish Exiles from Arab Lands

Product code: V113

Explores the history and destruction of Middle Eastern Jewish communities; some over 2500 years old. Using extensive testimony of refugees it recounts the stories of joy and suffering that nearly one million individuals have carried with them for so long.

When referring to the Arab-Israeli conflict the word refugee is nearly synonymous with Palestinian. The reality is that when Israel became a modern nation in 1948 there were more Jewish refugees than Palestinian. As five Arab nations launched a regional war against the state of Israel, an estimated 670,000 Arabs fled the war and an estimated 860,000 Jewish refugees were expelled from Arab lands.

The film weaves personal stories with dramatic archival footage of rescue missions, historic images of exodus and resettlement, and analyses of contemporary scholars to tell the story of how and why the Arab world’s Jewish population declined from one million in 1945 to only several thousand today.

The Forgotten Refugees is an essential corrective to the false impression that only the Arabs of Palestine suffered as a consequence of Israel’s War of Independence. The reality is that entire Jewish communities, in some instances predating not only Islam but Christianity, were destroyed with innocent Jews scattered across the world. This dramatic story is vividly recalled in rare documentary footage and in the personal accounts of those who endured this trauma, but succeeded in rebuilding their lives in Israel and elsewhere.