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This Week in History

November 3-9, 1995
The Assassination of Yitzhak Rabin

November 2013

On November 4, we mark the 18th anniversary of the assassination of Israeli Prime Minister and statesman Yitzhak Rabin, which occurred in 1995, two years after the consummation of the Oslo Accords. This was a murder from which the Middle East, and emphatically Israel, has not yet recovered, as the cycle of revenge killings has proceeded with increasing violence, since at least the fall of 2000.

There are two significant features to keep in our minds, as we commemorate the life of Rabin. First, there is the quality of leadership which he showed, in turning to peace-making after decades of wars. Such leadership, which Rabin described as a "changing of axioms" during a toast in July of 1995, is sorely needed today. Second, there is the constellation of political forces, both within Israel and the United States, which conspired successfully to murder him—forces which still must be defeated today.

Rabin's Courageous Leadership

Yitzhak Rabin was no "peacenik." Born in Jerusalem in 1922, he had fought for the independence of Israel from Great Britain in 1947-48, and played a commanding role in the 1967 war. During his tenure as Prime Minister, between 1984 and 1988, the Israeli government fought bitterly against the Palestinian Intifada; and over those years and those that followed, he showed no sign of softening toward the recognition of a Palestinian state. He became Prime Minister again in 1992.

Left to right: Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, U.S. President Bill Clinton, PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat

Yet in 1993, Rabin braved the wrath of the fanatics of his country, among others, in order to forge the Oslo Accords with the Palestinian Authority, and to sign a treaty with Yasser Arafat. His words at the signing ceremony, held under the eyes of President Clinton, deserve to be etched in our memories:

"Let me say to you, the Palestinians, we are destined to live together on the same soil in the same land. We, the soldiers who have returned from battles stained with blood; we who have seen our relatives and friends killed before our eyes; we who have attended their funerals and cannot look into the eyes of their parents; we who have come from a land where parents bury their children; we who have fought against you, the Palestinians; we say to you today in a loud and a clear voice, enough of blood and tears. Enough!

"We have no desire for revenge, we harbor no hatred towards you. We, like you, are people—people who want to build a home, to plant a tree, to love, live side by side with you in dignity, in affinity, as human beings, as free men. We are today giving peace a chance and saying to you, and saying again to you, 'Enough.' Let us pray that a day will come when we all will say farewell to arms. We wish to open a new chapter in the sad book of our lives together, a chapter of mutual recognition, of good neighborliness, of mutual respect, of understanding. We hope to embark on a new era in the history of the Middle East."

Two years later, when Oslo was under increased assault by those he called the Israeli "ayatollahs," Rabin encapsulated his thoughts on the change that was required to reach a peace. In a toast to President Clinton and King Hussein at the conclusion of the negotiations on Middle East peace on July 25, 1995, Rabin said: "If I raise my toast, I will raise it for those who have the courage to change axioms, to overcome prejudices, to change realities, and those who make it possible to them—for you, Your Majesty (King Hussein of Jordan); to you, President Clinton; to all those who believe and support and are ready to assist the continuation of peace in the region. Le Chaim. Le Chaim."

Rabin, basically a military man, had changed axioms, and he was leading his nation, along with others, toward building the peace.

The Fanatics

But, less than four months after Rabin made that toast, he was murdered, by a representative of the fanatical "Jewish underground," which was committed to preventing any peace. Profiles of the networks within which Rabin's assassin, Yigal Amir, operated, reveal that they were, and are, linked to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Likud party, the National Religious Party, and an international protection racket, which spans the Likudnik wing of the international Zionist movement, to the rabid Christian Zionists, and neo-conservatives.

According to a prime source on the Rabin murder, entitled Murder in the Name of God: The Plot to Kill Yitzhak Rabin,* the network of rabbis, settlers, political operatives, and their supporters in the United States, who conspired to kill Rabin, were very public, and well-known. One of the most prominent "respectables" was none other than Benjamin Netanyahu, a man who holds office in the Sharon Administration to this day. This network brazenly targeted Prime Minister Rabin as a "Nazi dog," put a curse on him, and killed him—in hopes of killing the peace process as well. But the sickest part, is those in the Israeli establishment, and in the international political arena, who simply sat back and allowed it to happen, virtually without repercussions.

Today, as a new peace initiative surfaces on the Israeli side, and leading Israeli institutions are starting to revolt against Sharon's perpetual war and genocide policy against the Palestinians, it is all the more crucial that those in high places in Israel who condoned, and organized, the murder of Yitzhak Rabin, be exposed and rejected. It's past time his advice be taken: "Enough of blood and tears, enough!"

* For a full review of this book, see Michele Steinberg, "Can Israel Save Itself from Fascism?", EIR, March 8, 2002. review by Michele Steinberg.


The original article was published in the EIR Online’s Electronic Intelligence Weekly, as part of an ongoing series on history, with a special emphasis on American history. We are reprinting and updating these articles now to assist our readers in understanding of the American System of Economy.