On the yahrtzeit of Rachel Imeinu, the Matriarch Rachek, over a half million people visited her tomb. At the official memorial ceremony for Yitzhak Rabin on Mount Herzl, on the same day, there were about four-hundred people attending, and most of them were required to come. Still, the yahrzeit of the murdered Prime Minister brought people to Rabin Square on Saturday night and filled both the electronic and printed media for days.
Let’s try not to talk about the murder. Everyone knows that murder is wrong. Let’s try to talk about the hatred surrounding the murder, which was directed at Rabin. To do that is almost impossible, because if you criticize Rabin, then you, so they claim, are a murderer too.
Just as it has been for the last twenty-four years, the focus of the memorial ceremony was not so much on the murder, as on the hate and incitement which preceded it. The terrible hatred. Bullets didn’t kill Yitzhak Rabin, they say. It was the hatred and incitement of the Right. That’s what the official speakers maintain in their eulogies. That’s what the Rabin family claims. That’s what the media echoes. Hatred killed Yitzhak Rabin. The atmosphere at the memorial is one of animosity and accusation.
Let’ try to analyze things objectively. Yes, there was animosity towards Rabin, but where did the animosity come from? If you ask the Left, the answer is Netanyahu. And the political Right. And the Rabbis. That’s what the Left continues to claim. That’s what the new movie about Yigal Amir wants to convince the audience to believe – the film that proposes to portray to the new generation, youngsters who didn’t know Yitzhak Rabin, the true story of what really happened leading up to his murder. According to the movie, and according to the “official” version of Modern Zionist History, we, the majority and consensus of the day, with our bitter hatred, killed the hero of peace.
But did our dislike of Rabin fall down from the clouds? Did it fall out from trees? No. There is a reason that over half of the nation vehemently opposed Yitzchak Rabin (not to mention a sizable portion of his own party who abhorred him as well.) There was something about Yitzchak Rabin, ever since he embarked on Oslo, which inspired the animosity of the normal man in the street, of doctors and nurses, of bus drivers, teachers, and shop owners, of hundreds of thousands of normal, healthy Israelis.
The animosity that the Left always screams about didn’t grow out of a test tube or petri dish. If Yitzchak Rabin was hated, the reaction of the nation stemmed from Rabin’s own character and deeds.
We on the Right tried to explain to him the error of his ways – oh how we tried. But he reacted with haughtiness and scorn. HE would decide, he stated. HE knew what was best. Ani, Ani, Ani, he declared. He called the idealists of the Golan “propellers.” He snarled when he responded to reporters. His eyed lacked warmth. With his mouth curled in disdain, he looked upon the settlers of Judea and Samaria as if they were bothersome flies who stood in his way.
Our Sages teach, “As water reflects a face, that’s how people are to each other.”
We begged him not to give rifles to the terror squads of Arafat, but Yitzchak Rabin, and his comrade in peace, Shimon Peres, gave thousands of rifles to them anyway, to enemies who used them to kill scores of Jews.
He gave away chunks of the Jewish Homeland to enemies who swore to destroy the Jewish State, and who have used that haven of terror ever since to rain down missiles and fire balloons on the people of Israel.
He bought votes in the Knesset with bribes, and relied on the backing of Arab parties to pass his ill-fated plans.
When bus after bus filled with innocent Jews were blown to the sky, he continued with his delusionary peace plan, barricading himself in his impenetrable arrogance, unwilling to listen to the tears and pleadings of more than half of the nation.
Emotions don’t sprout in a vacuum. The animosity the Right felt towards Rabin was of his own making and was entirely justified. What is never justified is murder.