I don't often get too personal on this blog, but today is an important day. Fifteen years ago, Israeli Prime Minster Yitzchak Rabin was assassinated after speaking at a peace rally in Tel Aviv in Kikar Malchei Yisrael (now called Kikar Rabin).
I don't have very many flashbulb memories from my childhood, but one of my most vivid memories were of watching PM Rabin and Chairman Arafat sign the Oslo Accords on the South Lawn of the White House on September 13, 1993. I was in the third grade, and we were allowed into the teachers room (!) where there was a TV set up so we could watch the broadcast of the hour-long ceremony. I have clear memories of Rabin saying his now-famous plea: "enough of blood and tears. Enough!"
Even now, all these years later, Rabin's speech moves me.
Another of my most vivid memories from my childhood was finding out that Prime Minster Rabin had been assassinated. I remember exactly where I was, what I was doing, and what I was wearing when my Mom came and told me what had happened. I was just ten years old. I'll simply share with you PM Rabin's final words before he was murdered:
I was a military man for 27 years. I waged war as long as there was no chance for peace. I believe there is now a chance for peace, a great chance, and we must take advantage of it for those standing here, and for those who are not here -- and they are many. I have always believed that the majority of the people want peace and are ready to take a chance for peace.
I continue to hope that the sentiment of hope expressed in those words - spoken fifteen years ago - will come to fruition.