Yitzhak Rabin

Yitzhak Rabin, of blessed memory
1922 - 1995
Israel's Prime Minister, assassinated on Nov. 4, 1995

Youth: Rabin was a "sab're" (born in Israel); he was born in Jerusalem in 1922. His parents were 3rd Aliya's pioneers who came to Eretz Israel (The Land of Israel) after the end of WW-I. He grew up in Tel-Aviv, and attended the famous Kaduri Agriculture High School, hoping to become an irrigation engineer (he never did).

The Palmach Era: In 1941 Rabin joined the Palmach - the elite forces of the Hagana (the underground military arm of the Jewish community in Eretz Israel). During WW-II he participated in operations against the German-friendly forces of Vichy France in Lebanon. He advanced quickly in ranks, becoming the Palmach's Chief Operations Officer in Oct. 1947. In the Palmach he met his wife Leah and they got married in 1948.

The War Of Independence: At the beginning of the Independence War, Rabin was the commander of the Har'el brigade that broke the siege on Jerusalem. He was later the deputy commander of Operation Danny - a major battle that secured Israeli control over the center of the country. He then participated in all the major battles against the Egyptian forces as the Chief Of Operations for the Southern Front.

Service in the IDF: Rabin's long and distinguished military career lasted till 1968. In 1964 he became IDF's Chief Of Staff. The culmination of his military career was the huge victory of the Six Days War (June 1967).

Beginning of Public Service As A Civilian: After his retirement from the IDF in 1968, Rabin served 5 years as Israel's ambassador to the USA.

First Term As Prime Minister: Rabin was elected to the Knesset at the end of 1973, and became a minister in Golda Meir's government. He succeeded Golda in June 1974 as Prime Minister. A very important achievement of his government was the Interim Agreement of 1975 with Egypt that paved the road to the Peace Agreement 4 years later. The most dramatic event during his 1st term as PM was Operation Entebbe - the release of Israeli hostages from Entebbe, Uganda.

Opposition Knesset member and Minister of Defense: In late 1976 Rabin encountered problems with religious parties in his coalition; new elections were scheduled to May 1977. In the May 1977 election, the Labor Party headed by Rabin was defeated, and the Likud party headed by Menachem Begin came to power. Until 1992 he served as either opposition Knesset member or Minister of Defense in various national unity governments.

Second Term As Prime Minister: In 1992 Rabin was elected chairman of the Labor Party which won the national elections; Rabin then became the Prime Minister again. As PM, Rabin signed the controversial Oslo Accords with the Palestinians (1993), and the peace agreement with Jordan (1994). During his 2nd term as PM, Rabin became a hero of Israel's "peace camp", and the target of vicious attacks by the right wing forces in Israel.

Assasination: On Nov. 4, 1995 Rabin was assassinated by a radical right-wing Jew. The shooting took place as Rabin was leaving a mass rally in Tel Aviv in support of the peace process defined by the Oslo Accords. He was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he died on the operating table. Rabin's assassination came as a great shock to the Israeli public and much of the rest of the world. His memory and legacy is commemorated on each anniversary of his murder.

The stamp was issued in 1995. Designer: Y. Granot.

The previous stamp (with the Hebrew article), issued in 2005, features The Yitzhak Rabin Center. The Yitzhak Rabin Center is the national institute established by the Knesset in 1997 that advances the legacy of Yitzhak Rabin. The Center presents Yitzhak Rabin’s remarkable life and tragic death, pivotal elements of the history of Israel, whose impact must not be ignored or forgotten lest risk the recurrence of such shattering events. The Center’s mission is to ensure that the vital lessons from this story are actively remembered and used to shape an Israeli society and leadership dedicated to open dialogue, democratic value, Zionism s and social cohesion.

The Center promotes activities and programs that inspire cultured, engaged and civil exchanges among the different sectors that make up the complex mosaic of Israeli society.

The centerpiece of the Yitzhak Rabin Center experience is The Israeli Museum. Comprised of nearly 200 short documentary films, visitors explore the history and makings of the State via exhibit halls, each focused on historical turning points in the country’s development. The exhibits present the conflicts, social challenges and dilemmas the country faced, as well as its successes. Along the inner corridor and interwoven with the exhibits’ narratives is the life story of Yitzhak Rabin, the connecting thread in the country’s history and development.

The Center’s educational workshops aim to instill the values of the Center to every student, soldier, and young citizen in Israel from every sector of society, from Israel’s center through the periphery. The seminars formed invaluable, enriching experiences for the 12,000 Israeli high school students and 13,000 IDF soldiers who participate in them each year.

Participants in the educational programs from all around Israel learn to see Rabin as a role model of leadership for his unrelenting belief in social responsibility alongside his beliefs in peace and security. They gain an appreciation of their own role in promoting well-being and unity of the Israeli people. The interactive workshops brings to life key issues for young leaders of living in democracy, forming identity, taking responsibility, protecting freedom of expression in a pluralistic society.