Shalom, Friend: The Life and Legacy of Yitzhak Rabin

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9781557042873: Shalom, Friend: The Life and Legacy of Yitzhak Rabin

The winner of the Non-Fiction National Jewish Book Award. This authoritative biography traces the life of Rabin, from 1922 to his untimely death on November 4, 1995, and its repercussions. 48 b/w photos.

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Review:

A complex portrait of a genuinely great man. -- Dan Rather, CBS News

An outstanding analysis. -- Thomas L. Friedman

Written by the reporters and editors of The Jerusalem Report, and drawn from interviews with the people who knew him best, Shalom, Friend: The Life & Legacy Of Yitzhak Rabin is a gripping, authoritative, entirely new biography tracing the extraordinary life of Yitzhak Rabin, warrior and peacemaker, from his birth in Jerusalem in 1922 to his untimely death by an assassin's bullet on November 4, 1995. Shalom, Friend covers such events as his courtship of young Leah Schlossberg (who served under him in the Palmah); his role in Israel's War of Independence, his triumph in the Six Day War, his ambassadorial years in Washington DC, his first prime ministership (during which he authorized the raid on Entebbe and that ended in scandal and resignation), his re-entry into political life and a second prime ministership, his dealings with seven American presidents from Johnson to Clinton, his domestic relationships with Israeli politicians David Ben-Gurion, Moshe Dayan, Golda Meir, Ariel Sharon, and Shimon Peres, and his eventual coming to terms with the man who was once his worst enemy -- Yasser Arafat. Shalom, Friend also provides in-depth accounts of the events that took place after the assassination: Arafat's historic "shivah" call on Leah Rabin; grand-daughter Noa Ben-Artzi's eulogy that brought Israel and the world to tears; the reaction among right-wing settlers; and the exposure of the assassination plot and the security failures that allowed it to succeed. Rich in facts, personal anecdotes, quotes, stories and opinions, written with clarity and care by experts, Shalom, Friend not only give us a dramatic portrayal of a great man's life, but a needed historical perspective on Israel yesterday and today, as well as an important look at what Rabin had in store for tomorrow had he lived to pursue the policies and path for peace he so painstakingly crafted. -- Midwest Book Review

From Kirkus Reviews:

An absorbing portrait of the remarkable life of the late Israeli Prime Minister. David Horovitz, managing editor of The Jerusalem Report, deftly assembled the research of over two dozen of the Report's writers to produce a biography of Rabin that focuses on the recent peace process and the circumstances that led to his assassination. Earlier events in Rabin's life are covered in full--his early years in the Palmach, his military accomplishments in both the War of Independence and the Six Day War, and his stint as Israel's ambassador to the US--but this book's strength lies in its gripping analysis of Rabin's relationship with both the Palestinians and with Israeli settlers in the contested territory of the West Bank. Until the outbreak of the Intifada, Rabin paid almost no attention to the Palestinians. He knew little about them and had no interest in knowing more. His solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict leaned to the ``Jordanian Option,'' with its provision for continued Israeli settlement along the Jordan Valley. When the Intifada did break out in 1987, Rabin, misreading the Palestinians, dismissed it as insignificant. Yet it was precisely the Intifada that caused Rabin to realize that the Palestinians were an enemy with whom he would have to negotiate. The Intifada ``had turned the Palestinian people into a proper enemy. And, as such, they earned the right in Rabin's eyes to a proper peace.'' And if Rabin lacked insight into the Palestinians, he had even less into the West Bank settlers. He perceived most of them as obstacles to peace, and ``was positively infuriated by the vigilante elements among them.'' And as a secular Jew, Rabin had ``few sentiments for the area's past.'' It may well have been, in fact, the chasm between the secular Rabin and the religious nationalists that set the scene for his tragic death. Well-researched, engrossing, and admirably objective, Shalom, Friend is a significant contribution. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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