Yitzhak Rabin (1922-1995)

Yitzhak Rabin was Israel's Prime Minister in the 1990's, up until his tragic assassination in November, 1995. Millions mourned this great man who lived to bring peace to all the people of the Middle East. He won the Nobel Peace Prize.






Biography from the Philatelic Service of the Israel Postal Authority...

Yitzhak Rabin was born in Jerusalem in March,1922. His father, Nehemiah, had immigrated to Israel from the United States, and served as a volunteer in the Jewish Legion in World War I. His mother, Rosa, was one of the first members of the Haganah. Yitzhak Rabin attended primary school in Tel-Aviv, and the Kedourie Agricultural College in the lower Galilee, from which he graduated with distinction. After completing his studies, he volunteered for the Palmach, where he began his military career. He served in the Palmach and the IDF for 27 years. In 1949, he was a member of the Israeli delegation to the first negotiations with Egypt.
Yitzhak Rabin held the following military positions: 1941-1947 Member of the Palmach, 1947 Operations Officer of the Palmach, 1948 Commander of the Harel Brigade, 1953-1956 Commander, IDF Training Branch, 1956-1959 OC Northern Command, 1959-1963 IDF Deputy Chief of Staff, 1964-1968 IDF Chief of Staff.
On January 1, 1968, he retired from active duty in the IDF. Shorty afterwards, he was appointed Israel's ambassador to the United States. During his years of service as ambassador in Washington, he cultivated and consolidated ties between the two countries.
In the spring of 1973, he returned to Jerusalem and became active in the Labour Party. In the December 1973 elections, he was elected to the 8th Knesset. When Golda Meir formed her government in April 1974, he became the Minister of Labor. On June 2, 1974, there was a vote of confidence in the new government headed by Yitzhak Rabin. During his first tenure as Prime Minister, special emphasis was put on improving Israel's economy, solving its social problems, and on strengthening the IDF. With American mediation, Prime Minister Rabin conducted negotiations which led to the 1975 interim agreement with Egypt. As a result of these negotiations, the first Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Israel and the United States. In June 1976, the government headed by Yitzhak Rabin ordered the Entebbe operation. Following the May 1977 elections for the 9th Knesset, Yitzhak Rabin ordered the Entebbe operation. Following the May 1977 elections for the 9th Knesset, Yitzhak Rabin served as MK in the opposition (Labour) and was a member of the Foreign Affairs and the Defense Committee. He filled these positions until the formation of the National Unity Government, following the 1984 elections for the 10th Knesset.
In 1985, Defense Minister Rabin presented the Government with the proposal for the IDF withdrawal from Lebanon, and the establishment of a security zone to guarantee peace for the communities along Israel's northern border.
In May 1989, the Israeli Government adopted his plan for an arrangement with the Palestinians, in stages, which served as the blueprint for subsequent peace-making efforts. He served as the Minister of Defense in successive National Unity Governments, from September 1984 until March 1990, when the Labour Party returned to opposition. Yitzhak Rabin was elected Chairman of the Israel Labour Party, in its first nationwide primaries, in April 1992. He led the Labour Party to victory in the June 1992 elections for the 13th Knesset and formed a government the following month. As Prime Minister, he declared a new set of national priorities- different from that of previous governments- that included peace first and foremost.
On September 13, 1993, he signed the Israeli-Palestinian Declaration of Principles. On July 25, 1994, he signed the document which formally ended the state of belligerency between the State of Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan with King Hussein of Jordan. On December 10, 1994, he received the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize. On September 28, 1995, he signed the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Prime Minister and Defense Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated by a lone assassin on Saturday, November 4, 1995, shortly after speaking at a peace rally in Tel Aviv's Malchei Yisrael Square, which has now been renamed Yitzhak Rabin Square.