It is 12 years since the assisination of Yitzchak Rabin, and Jewish communities are marking the event the world over.Â Â Today there is a workshop and activity underway in Perth led by the Zionist youth groups.
When Yitzchak Rabin was shot down, it was one of those “do you remember when you heard the news” moments of history.Â I was in a Hebrew School class teaching children.Â We suspended our activities and talked immediately about what had happened.Â Even without the knowledge of the ideological backlash that was to follow, we discussed how dangerous political rhetoric could be.Â There is a clear commandment in the Torah not to murder, and no amount of interpretation or politicisation of a religious precept can justify the taking of the life of a democratically elected leader.Â
For a while, and sadly the trend has yet to fully reverse, the “peace camp” ofÂ the leftÂ use the occasion ofÂ the RabinÂ yartzeit to espouse hatred and division.Â Some on the right are not much better.Â
There are lots of conspiracy theories around, none of which I subscribe to.Â This event was an abherration and bleak mark of Jewish history, and there is a lesson to be learned.Â In a politically polarised Jewish society there is room for division, but not destruction.Â In a hostileÂ environment, consensus is needed not with our enemies, but ourselves.Â Without this, theÂ political tensionÂ in Israel can only worsenÂ for the Jewish people.Â Â
Congratulations to those in Perth who took the time today to participate, contemplate, and unify those people who care about the welfare of Israel as a Jewish State.Â