Eizenstat Honored by Iranian Jewish Community in Los Angeles
During Stu’s recent trip to Los Angeles to deliver the Nemer Lecture at USC, he was honored by the Iranian Community in Lost Angeles at the home of Isaac and Jaqueline Moradi, organized by Sam Kermanian, at a dinner with 200 Iranian-American Jews.
Stu was cited for his work as Chief Domestic Policy Adviser to President Jimmy Carter, during the Iranian Revolution in 1979. During that time, the head of the Iranian Jewish community was executed, and there was great fear among the 100,000 strong Iranian Jewish community and other religious communities in revolutionary Iran. Working with President Carter and an interagency team, Stu took the leadership in saving the lives of tens of thousands of Iranian Jews, Christians and B’hais, by having the President create an exception to his Executive Order after the American hostages were taken. The exception prevented those already in the U.S. from being deported back to Iran and permitted those still in Iran to seek asylum in the U.S.
Mr. Moradi and Mr. Kermanian met with Stu at the White House more than 35 years ago to plead the case for the threat to their community. The community gathering in Los Angeles noted, “Stu’s quiet efforts in opening up the doors to the migration of our community members to the United States after the Iranian Revolution [which] have been instrumental in saving the lives of thousands of our brothers and sisters and in our own abilities to resettle in this great country.” There was an outpouring of gratitude and appreciation for Stu’s intervention with Jimmy Carter on behalf of the Iranian Jewish community. Many guests came up to Stu to tell him personally that they, their spouses and children would never have been in the U.S. had it not been for his efforts.
Stu was motivated by what he knew was the inaction of the U.S. government in helping Jews seeking to flee from Hitler’s grasp to come to the United States. The spectacular home of the Moradi’s testified to the successful lives that members of this community have established over the past 35 years, many of whom moved to Los Angeles.