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Rabin’s Funeral

Parshat Hayei Sarah (Genesis 23:1-25:18)

URL: http://www.jewishjournal.com/torah_portion/article/rabins_funeral_20021101

Given the atmosphere in the Middle East today, it is hard to believe that just seven years ago, on Nov. 6, 1995, a Jewish funeral took place where the deceased was surrounded and eulogized by Jews and Arabs. Yes, this week marks the seventh anniversary of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin's funeral. Rabin was publicly eulogized (in this order) by Israeli President Ezer Weizman, King Hussein of Jordan, acting Prime Minister Shimon Peres and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. A Jew, followed by an Arab, followed by a Jew, followed by an Arab, all standing together at one graveside in Israel, eulogizing one Jewish leader. Children born that year in the Middle East probably have a hard time understanding how such an integrated funeral was really possible, given the Middle East they have witnessed since they were born. Was Rabin's funeral, which brought together Jews and Arabs for one brief moment, the first of its nature in the history of the Middle East?

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