As Benjamin Netanyahu flies to Entebbe, Uganda to start a five-day trip to Africa, he will doubtless find the journey to be bittersweet. 40 years ago his brother Jonathon led a force of Israeli commandos to the airport of that African town, a flight of almost 2,500 miles, to liberate a plane full of Israeli hostages. The hostages had been hijacked in midair by a team of Palestinian and German Baader-Meinhof terrorists and taken to the Ugandan airport where they were made the unwilling guests of the mad, bad, and dangerous to know dictator Idi Amin.

The older Netanyahu’s force liberated all but four of the hostages, killed the terrorists, and brought them back safely to Israel. Jonathon Netanyahu was killed during the operation that astonished the world and took place, ironically, on America’s bicentennial.

Prime Minister Netanyahu’s visit to Africa has a far more benign purpose than the one his brother paid decades ago. Along with ceremonies commemorating the raid, Netanyahu will visit with a number of African leaders to promote more business ties with the Jewish state.

The trip constitutes a warming of relations between Israel and sub-Saharan Africa, which have been chilly since the Yom Kippur War of 1973.

Netanyahu will be accompanied by a military delegation, including original participants in the raid, who will attend the ceremony at Entebbe before returning to Israel. The remainder of the delegation, mainly Israeli businessmen, will make commercial deals in various African countries while Netanyahu meets with presidents of Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan and Zambia, as well as the prime minister of Ethiopia and foreign minister of Tanzania.

Besides Uganda, Netanyahu will visit Kenya, Rwanda, and Ethiopia.

The first visit to Africa by a sitting Israeli prime minister highlight’s Israel’s emergence as a high-tech commercial power. The Jewish state has developed a technological, business sector that has come to rival Silicon Valley in the United States. With the development of natural gas fields offshore in the Mediterranean, Israel will soon be in the unlikely position of being a net energy exporter.

An Israeli team is even a front-runner to be the first private group to land on the moon.

Israel is still beset by terrorism, as illustrated by the savage murder of a 13-year-old girl in her bed by a teenage Palestinian. But the real history that is being made in the Jewish state will be in boardrooms and labs and not, necessarily, on the battlefield.

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