PM Netanyahu calls for national unity at Rabin memorial

PM responds to criticism from son of late Prime Minister Yizhak Rabin over toxic political environment and incitement.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

PM Netanyahu at memorial for Yitzhak Rabin
PM Netanyahu at memorial for Yitzhak Rabin
Ham Tzach/GPO

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke at the memorial ceremony marking the 22nd anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin Wednesday.

The Prime Minister addresses Rabin's son, Yuval, who criticized the "incitement" which he said still permeates the political discourse in Israel. "I understand the anguish you feel in facing waves of slander and calumny directed against your father. Believe me, I understand that."

"You turned to me, and so I pick up the gauntlet. I call for national reconciliation and brotherhood. I have done it many times before, but in light of your moving call, I repeat this message with all my might," Netanyahu said.

In his speech to Yuval and Dalia Rabin, Netanyahu said, "I greatly admired your father and I liked him very much. I met him for the first time in the 1970s, when I came to the Balfour House with my father, where we talked about the political pressures thrust upon Israel. I was just a young man, but I admired him very much. Shortly afterwards, we met again, him and my father and mother, in the days of mourning after my brother fell. We met many times over the years. When he brought the Oslo Accords, he acted at his discretion for the good of Israel. I have acted, and continue to do so today, according to my judgment, for the good of Israel. But I disagreed with him. What I said has been documented countless times: He is wrong, but he is not a traitor."

Earlier, Yuval Rabin said that "incitement and division continues to devastate us today, and anyone who thinks differently automatically is labeled a traitor."

He said that Rabin "was not pleased with the Supreme Court, and he was not appointed by the media, but he did not initiate legislation to shut people's mouths. He did not shirk responsibility, and he did not whine."

"The list of traitors is getting longer by the day, but we can not restrain ourselves because Yitzhak Rabin is defined as a murderer. We must stop this madness."