Rabin, Yitzhak

Rabin, Yitzhak

Rabin was born in Jerusalem on March 1, 1922. In 1941 Rabin joined the Palmach underground. In 1945. In 1947 he was appointed Deputy Commander of the Palmach. He married Leah Shlossberg in 1948 and they had two children, Yuval and Dalia. 

Rabin studied at the Camberly Staff College in Britain until 1953. In 1954 he was appointed head of the IDF Training Branch by Moshe Dayan, and was promoted to Brigadier General. He planned the Israeli officers training college. From 1956-1959 he was Chief of Operations of the Northern Command, and in 1961 he became deputy Chief of Staff of the IDF. On Jan 1, 1964, he became Chief of Staff of the IDF, and led the IDF in the 6 Day War. Rabin retired from the Army in 1968. He joined the Labor party and was subsequently appointed ambassador to the United States. In 1973, Rabin returned to Israel and became Minister of Labor in the cabinet of Golda Meir. Following the resignation of Golda Meir, Rabin became Prime Minister on June 2, 1974. In 1977 Rabin resigned as Prime Minister and head of the Labor party in favor of Shimon Peres. 

From 1984, Rabin served as Defense Minister in the unity governments under Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Shamir. Rabin was responsible for the withdrawal from most of Lebanon, and was also responsible for Israeli policy during the Intifada. He is famously quoted as having said of the Palestinians "We will break their bones". In 1992, Rabin was chosen as leader of the Labor party, replacing Shimon Peres. He led his party to victory over the opposition Likud for the first time since 1977, and became Prime Minister in June of 1992, assuming the post of Defense Minister as well, and giving Peres the post of Foreign Minister. He lead Israel to the Oslo peace agreement with the Palestinians and peace with Jordan. In 1994, Rabin was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize along with Yasser Arafat and Shimon Peres in recognition of their role in the Oslo peace process.

A peace rally was held in Tel Aviv on the evening of November 4, 1995 and was well attended. Rabin shared the podium with his Shimon Peres, singing songs of peace, and then left to go to his car. As he approached his automobile, a right-wing fanatic, Yigal Amir, broke through the police security and fired several shots at Rabin's back. Rabin was rushed to hospital and died there shortly thereafter. His funeral was attended by numerous world leaders, including US President Clinton and King Hussein of Jordan.

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