The memorial was established in the Israel-Argentina Friendship Park in Ben Shemen Forest, next to the monuments commemorating the 1994 and 1992 terror attacks in Buenos Aires
This morning, on the 4th anniversary of his tragic death, Israel’s largest Jewish-environmental organization, Keren Kayemet L’Israel-Jewish National Fund (KKL-JNF) unveiled the monument built in Alberto Nisman’s honor in a formal ceremony with officials from both Israel and Argentina.
Nisman was appointed Chief Investigator of the 1994 car bombing against the Israel Argentina Mutual Association (AMIA) which killed 85 people, making it the worst terrorist attack in Argentina’s history and the worst attack against Jews since the Holocaust.
On January 18, 2015, Nisman was found dead just one day before he was scheduled to report on his findings on the attack. His death led to public protests in Argentina and drew vast international attention.
Over 300 attendees from both Argentina and throughout the state of Israel gathered at the event to commemorate Nisman’s memory and his courageous efforts to bring those behind the AMIA terror attack to justice. Among those attending the ceremony were: Nisman’s mother, Sara Garfunkel; Knesset Chairman, MK Yuli Edelstein; Argentinean Ambassador to Israel, H.E. Mr. Mariano Caucino; KKL-JNF Vice Chairman, Mr. Hernán Felman; AMIA President, Mr. Agustin Zbar; and DAIA President Jorge Knoblovits.
The monument in memory of Alberto Nisman was built by KKL-JNF and KKL Argentina in the Israel-Argentina Friendship Park, next to the memorial built in honor of those killed in the 1994 car bombing of the AMIA building in Buenos Aires and the 1992 suicide bombing of the Israeli Embassy in Argentina.
KKL-JNF Vice Chairman, Hernán Felman thanked the many KKL-JNF team members responsible for planning the event, who worked with dedication and commitment to make the event possible. Regarding the unresolved investigation of the AMIA bombing, he said that “Evil will not prevail, evil would prevail if we were to forget this tragic event; and that is why we are here, to commemorate Nisman’s memory and the memory of those lost.
“The malicious minds that tried to kill us found out, to their disappointment, that we had only gotten stronger. We will keep strengthening Israel’s defense and the protection of our brothers in the diaspora – the blood of our blood. They are there for us in quiet times and in crisis, and we are here for them. When we stand together, there is nothing in the world that can take us.”
Knesset Chairman, MK Yuli Edelstein expressed that today Alberto Nisman’s name is widely known, and spoke of his courageous quest towards the truth. “There are those that are afraid of the truth. Those that will do everything to hide it, but the truth is rooted deeply in the ground. Just like the trees we planted today, it has deep roots. Nisman was a brilliant attorney, dedicated to his family, and more than anything he was a man of truth.
“All those who come to the beautiful forest planted by the KKL-JNF, all those who visit the monument we established for Alberto Nisman will remember that all the attempts at attacking the Jewish people and destroying the state of Israel will not succeed. Because the truth will rise from the roots of the earth.”
Argentinean Ambassador to Israel, H.E. Mariano Caucino reaffirmed Argentina’s commitment to exposing the truth in the case of AMIA and in the case of the death of Nisman, “Today we commemorate the memory of the federal persecutor of Argentina who was responsible for investigating the worst terrorist attack in the history of Argentina, and the worst attack against the Jewish people since the Holocaust. Nisman dedicated the last years of his life to find the truth but death stopped him short from bringing the case to justice.”
AMIA President, Agustin Igdal Zbar called for swift action regarding the AMIA bombing investigation and bringing the Iranian suspects to be tried in Argentinian court for the 1994 terror attack that has yet to be brought to justice. He mentioned also the ceremony in Nisman’s memory and said that “It is no coincidence that Israel has answered the call of establishing such a memorial in Nisman’s honor, as we hold the same values and the country is always there for us. Even before the establishment of the state of Israel, we have had strong ties with this nation, as we were part of the state’s founding.
“At this time I’d like to thank KKL-JNF, that established this incredibly important monument in Israel, and this memorial in the middle of the forest, which is something unique to Israel. The significance is even greater since we will be celebrating Tu Bishvat soon, which is the New Year for the trees.”
DAIA President, Ariel Cohen Sabban noted the special meaning of this event occurring in Israel, as the Jewish state has always stood in solidarity alongside Argentina on the journey to uncover the truth. He added that “This July will mark 25 years since the AMIA bombing which has yet been brought to justice. We must advance this investigation to truly honor the memories of those killed in the attack.”
Nisman’s mother, Sara Garfunkel acknowledged the recognition given to her son with a few words, “I would like to warmly thank the Keren Kayemet for establishing this monument, I needed this honor for my son. I thank the state of Israel, KKL-JNF, Argentina’s ambassador in Israel and everyone else that contributed to making this memorial possible.”
Photos by Silvia G. Golan