NBN was a huge help. The paperwork was all filled out ahead of time. Everything went very smoothly and NBN has been there to help all along, making sure we had "buddies" who had already made aliyah, a place to go for the chaggim if we were alone, job fairs, seminars to help with various issues (AACI also offers these). They kept in touch with us for the first five years of our aliyah until we assured them we were okay on our own. And they HAVE increased North American aliyah. Maybe not 10,000 per year but certainly they have been more pro-active than the JA ever was. Funds do go to new immigrants, and I'm somewhat offended by the depiction of Anglos as all "rich" -- I'm sure some are comfortably well off but there are also retirees on limited incomes who come to live near their children and grandchildren; there are young couples with no savings and no assets who come because they want to be Israeli. This snobby reverse racism and classist mentality is both bigoted and a disservice to NBN and its new immigrants who need a financial helping hand to make aliyah.
Turkish official: 2 Vice News journalists freed from jail (AP)