After Afghanistan's last Jew refused to leave, his would-be Jewish rescuers helped dozens of other Afghans escape instead


September 3, 2021

Jesus Hellin/Europa Press via Getty Images

Afghan refugees' luggage sits at the Torrejon de Ardoz air base in Madrid, Spain, Aug. 24, 2021.

(JTA) - Zebulon Simantov, Afghanistan's last Jew, has not left Kabul, despite the best efforts of some Jewish figures and organizations.

One of them was Moshe Margaraten, a haredi Orthodox fixer whose passion is bringing Jews out of danger.

Margareten paid Moti Kahana, an Israeli-American businessman who helped extract people from war-torn Syria, to be a middleman and get Simantov out - but Kahana told Margareten what many others had heard: Simantov was not leaving because of his longstanding refusal to grant his Israeli wife a "get," or decree of divorce. Simantov feared facing Israel's le...

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