Ever since the formation of the State Israel in 1948, the Jewish community in the former Soviet-Union tried to get permission to leave their country to go to Israel. The Soviet authorities treated the Jews as criminals. It was forbidden for them to confess their faith openly. Many of them were imprisoned, such as Nathan Sharansky. Others were continually placed under pressure. Continuous pressure from the West finally made a change.
During the 1970′s and 80′s 160,000 Russian Jews managed to make Aliyah to Israel. In 1984 the international action “Let My People Go” led to the release of Sharansky and other famous dissidents. After the downfall of communism in 1989, the stream of Russian Jews towards Israel grew enormously. Meanwhile the thing everybody thought would be impossible happened: the Soviet-Union fell apart.
Until today about 40,000 Jewish immigrants from the whole world arrive every year in their new homeland Israel.