Veteran to speak on ‘The Miracle at Entebbe’ at Chabad event in Rancho Santa Fe

On Wednesday, June 21, The Benedek Lecture Series of Chabad Jewish Center of RSF presents “The Miracle at Entebbe, an Evening with Sassy Reuven,” a veteran of the Israel Defense Special Operation Forces.

During the terror-filled years of 1973-1976, Reuven served in the IDF’s elite “Red Beret” paratrooper unit. He participated in several covert operations in Israel’s mighty struggle against Arab terrorism.

In July 1976, Sassy participated in the famed Entebbe counter-terrorist hostage-rescue mission code named “Operation Thunderbolt,” flying thousands of miles over enemy 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, and flown to Entebbe, the main airport of Uganda. More than 100 Israeli and Jewish passengers remained as hostages and were threatened with death.

Israeli transport planes carried 100 commandos over 2,500 miles (4,000 km) to Uganda for the rescue operation which took place at night. The operation lasted 90 minutes. One-hundred and two hostages were rescued. Five Israeli commandos were wounded and one, the 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, step-by-step from the moment he was called to duty, including the preparation for the mission, landing in Uganda and completing the mission behind enemy lines.

His 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.

On Wednesday , June 21, at 7 p.m., Reuven will share his remarkable story at a private Rancho Santa Fe residence, a project of Chabad Jewish Center of RSF with special thanks to Drs. Andrew and Diana Benedek. Refreshments will be served, a book signing held and valet parking available.

Tickets and more information is available online at or by calling 858-756-7571.