Typically we think of adoption as an event limited to the confines of a family, however adoption can take place at a national level as well.
Operation Moses is the single largest adoption event in history. Over the course of six weeks from Nov. to Jan. 1984 some 9,000 Ethiopian Jews were transported from Sudan to Israel. The objective of the operation was to rescue the Ethiopian Jewish community from a famine in Sudan and relocate them in Israel where they were to be "adopted" by the country.
This story adds some twists to concepts what we have discussed in class.
First, because the Ethiopian community was Jewish Israel sort of served as their "biological parents" despite the fact that they had never been to Israel. From this perspective, Sudan was the adoptive country despite that fact that that was where this Ethiopian community was from.
Second, we have often discussed the notion of rescuing adoptees. But in this case the goal of the operation was to rescue an entire community, not one child, not a few siblings, the entire Jewish community.
In fact, the mission was only completed in 1991 when the remaining 14,000 Jews were finally brought to Israel.
I just thought it was interesting to see how the term adoption is not limited by number, that it can be applied to an entire community.