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Iranian American Jewish Federation (IAJF)

Honoring Ambassador Stuart E. Eizenstat

On May 6th, 2018, the Iranian American Jewish Federation, with the generous sponsorship of Mr. Isaac and Mrs. Jacqueline Moradi, held a grand reception, conference, and book signing at the Beverly Hilton to publicly acknowledge and honor Ambassador Stuart E. Eizenstat, the late Moussa Kermanian, and nine community leaders for their brave and humanitarian efforts to facilitate immigration for all Iranians after the 1979 Islamic revolution.

More than 700 Iranian Americans of multiple faiths revisited the unfolding of history around President Jimmy Carterís policy after the hostage crises. In retaliation, President Carter had threatened to deport all Iranians living in the US or waiting for entry visa. The presentation started with Mr. Sam Kermanian, the Senior Adviser of the Iranian American Jewish Federation, illustrating the agony and the urgency in which his father and the rest of the community advocates made the trip to Washington. The late Mr. Kermanian believed that without their efforts to change the policies of President Carterís administration, many Iranian Jews and other minorities would have lost their lives. Kermanian believed that without their efforts to change the policies of President Carterís administration, many Iranian Jews and other minorities would have lost their lives. Mrs. Susan Azizzadeh, the President of the IAJF, gave a touching and emotional speech about the leadership and vision of the late Moussa Kermanian and the wisdom of his son who was only 24 years old at the time of the White House meeting. Mrs. Azizzadeh thanked the families of the ten-member delegation and called Mr. Isaac and Mrs. Jacqueline to present a plaque of appreciation to Mrs. Azizeh Kermanian and the entire family for their continued support and community advocacy.

In his book, ďPresident Carter: The White House Yearsí, Eizenstat, describes Carterís presidency, policies, and the lack of support for the late Shah. He acknowledges the importance of Carterís meeting with the ten-member delegation (late Attaollah Aghaie, Mr. Eddie Elghnayan, late Massood Haroonian, late Shamsi Hekmat, late Samad Kashfi, late Moussa Kermanian, Mr. Sam Kermanian, Professor Iraj Lalehzari, Mr. Isaac Moradi and Mr. Solomon Rastegar). Eizenstat tried to prevent the deportation of the Jews and other minorities in fear of retaliation. He was concerned that the Jews would not survive an Islamic Revolution, especially after the leader of the community, Habib Elghanayan, had been executed only few months earlier. He felt that the Islamic revolution in Iran was at the precipice of another Holocaust. With his brave efforts, the unity, and compassion of many Iranian Jewish activists working secretly and quietly behind the scene, there were able to save the lives of many Iranians.

In appreciation of the efforts initiated by Iranian Jews, representatives of the Bahaíis, Armenians, Assyrian, Zoroastrians and Muslims joined the gathering. Additionally, the Consuls General of Austria, Azerbaijan, Germany, Japan, Peru, Poland, Republic of Senegal and Turkey attended both the reception as well as the dinner gala, courtesy of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Moradi.

In addition to the sponsorship of a lavish spread at the hotel, Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Moradi held a fundraising dinner gala at their residence, to support The Defiant Requiem Foundation, which preserves the little?known story of the Nazi concentration camp, Terez?n, where Jewish inmates fought back with defiance and defense through their culture of art and music. The Iranian American Jewish community rose to the occasion and contributed generously to the Foundation, which will hold a concert at UCLA in April of 2019. Mrs. Susan Azizzadeh and Mr. Manochehr Nazarian, the Chairman of the IAJF Board of Directors, presented a plaque to Mr. and Mrs. Moradi for their extraordinary generosity and for raising the bar of philanthropy in our community.