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Hospitality from strangers


The Suez crisis
Claudia Roden Writer
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In my second year... I did a first year and second year at art school. And I did then a lot of different things, apart from art. I did sculpture, printing. We learnt many crafts as well. But suddenly... yes, there was the Suez crisis. And France and England attacked Egypt. Because Nasser then had nationalised the Suez Canal that had been built by French and British companies, without compensating them. And he seized the canal and France and England decided to attack Egypt, and they asked Israelis to join them. Israel was already at war with Egypt.

But they asked them to attack at the same time from the sea, while they attacked from the air. And they bombed Egypt. And they, especially Alexandria and several parts. So, for Egypt it was the most... they had never been attacked in that way. And so, it was a failed war, because America stepped in and United Nations to say, you can't do that. And it was like an aborted war. But then, Nasa decided to throw out the Jews. And he did.

Claudia Roden (b. 1936) is an Egyptian-born British cookbook writer and cultural anthropologist of Sephardi/Mizrahi descent. She is best known as the author of Middle Eastern cookbooks including A Book of Middle Eastern Food, The New Book of Middle Eastern Food and The Book of Jewish Food.

Listeners: Nelly Wolman

Claudia Roden talking to her granddaughter Nelly Wolman about her life in food.

Tags: France, England, Egypt, Israel, Gamal Abdel Nasser

Duration: 1 minute, 47 seconds

Date story recorded: September 2022

Date story went live: 04 December 2023