Supporters mark 31st anniversary of Rabbi Meir Kahane's assassination

31 years after murder of former MK and founder of the JDL, supporters of Rabbi Meir Kahane gather in Jerusalem for memorial.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

פעם, כשניסו להקים יישוב על פי תורתו, איש לא התרגש. הרב מאיר כהנא
פעם, כשניסו להקים יישוב על פי תורתו, איש לא התרגש. הרב מאיר כהנא
צילום ארכיון: משה שי, פלאש 90

Supporters of the late Rabbi Meir Kahane gathered in Jerusalem Sunday evening for a memorial event marking the 31st anniversary of Rabbi Kahane’s death.

A year after the in-person event was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, supporters gathered Sunday at the Heichal David event hall in the capital to commemorate the slain rabbi, who was assassinated during a public address in New York City in November 1990 by El-Sayyid Nosair, an Egyptian terrorist linked to the Al Qaeda terrorist organization.

Rabbi Dov Lior, a senior rabbinic figure in the Religious Zionist movement, is among the speakers listed for the event, along with MK Itamar Ben-Gvir (Religious Zionist Party), former MK Michael Ben-Ari, former MK Moshe Feiglin, Rabbi Yehuda Kroizer – the chief rabbi of Mitzpeh Yericho and dean of Rabbi Kahane’s ‘HaRayon HaYehudi’ yeshiva – along with Hebron activist Baruch Marzel, and Bentzi Gopstein, founder and chairman of the Lahava anti-assimilation organization.

The Brooklyn-born rabbi sparked controversy both in the US and Israel, founding the Jewish Defense League in 1968 before immigrating to Israel in 1971 and establishing the Kach party.

Advocating Jewish self-defense with the JDL and pushing for the transfer of Israel’s Arab population with the Kach party, Rabbi Kahane was frequently denounced by establishment Jewish groups in the US and much of Israel’s political leadership.

Rabbi Kahane is also remembered for his efforts with the JDL to pressure the Soviet Union to permit Russian Jews to emigrate out of the country in the late 1960s and 1970s.

After three failed attempts to enter the Knesset, Rabbi Kahane was elected in 1984 when his Kach party received one seat in the 11st Knesset election.

In 1988, Rabbi Kahane was barred from running for reelection and his Kach party later outlawed.

During an address to supporters in New York in 1990, Rabbi Kahane was shot and killed by El-Sayyid Nosair, who had disguised himself as an Orthodox Jew.