The world, it seems, gets crazier every day.
Larissa Trimbobler, Yigal Amir's wife, is scheduled to give birth to the couple's son on October 24, the national memorial day for late prime minister Yitzhak Rabin, who was murdered by Amir 12 year ago.
The date of the delivery hardly seems like a coincidence, and it appears that Trimbobler had pre-planned it during her fertility treatments.
Well, nuts will be nuts. But no less nuts is this demented fantasy, courtesy of Shimon Peres, with considerable help from some particularly clueless staff writers at the Jerusalem Post.
Peres and Rabin had been bitter rivals for a long time, and a great deal of acrimony had passed between them. But when they realized that the nation had to change its priorities and began to work together toward that goal, the animosity dissipated. They became colleagues and even friends.
As he recalled the final hours of Rabin's life, Peres said: "Personally, I never felt such closeness between us - an ideological and a personal closeness. We were so reconciled, so united, and so enthused and excited by what was happening in front of us, and by what we anticipated would happen the following day."
Peres could not remember ever seeing such radiance on Rabin's face.
And all the time, noted Peres, the assassin was lurking with his gun cocked.
When Rabin fell, the president said, it seemed as if the curtain had suddenly come down on the prospect for peace, and the nation felt as if it had been brutally orphaned. Peres suddenly found himself alone, without Rabin's support, without his leadership.
He knew that no one could replace his friend. Peres had learned that when Rabin committed himself to something, he remained as steadfast as a rock, and no opposition could move him.
But Rabin was no longer there and Peres felt as if everything around him had collapsed. All that remained was pain and grief.
Oh, barf! Pure adulterated crap, as anyone who was paying attention 12 years ago and beyond can attest. Peres rarely had Rabin's support and he never treated Rabin as a leader but rather as a rival. Carrying on what's become a tradition here at InContext, let's use this (Jewish calendar) anniversary of Rabin's murder to remember what it was the man actually stood for, rather than what those who abuse his memory have made him out to be.
Here (courtesy of IMRA), one month before his death, was the framework of the "permanent solution" Rabin envisioned as the road to peace between Israel and her neighbors.
A. First and foremost, united Jerusalem, which will include both Ma'ale Adumim and Givat Ze'ev -- as the capital of Israel, under Israeli sovereignty, while preserving the rights of the members of the other faiths, Christianity and Islam, to freedom of access and freedom of worship in their holy places, according to the customs of their faiths.
B. The security border of the State of Israel will be located in the Jordan Valley, in the broadest meaning of that term.
C. Changes which will include the addition of Gush Etzion, Efrat, Beitar and other communities, most of which are in the area east of what was the "Green Line," prior to the Six Day War.
D. The establishment of blocs of settlements in Judea and Samaria, like the one in Gush Katif.
No "Palestinian state," no return to the '67 borders. Rabin was willing to take risks for peace, but he was not willing to commit national suicide for it, even in stages. Yes, I know I've quoted this before.
But here's something different. I came across this review of two biographies of Rabin, both written shortly after his assassination. It includes this brief portrait of the man, hardly flattering but nonetheless admirable -- in this context.
Rabin was not a sunny soul. He was a hard drinker and a chain smoker. As a military man, he was compulsive in his attention to strategic and technical details, but he was never thought of as imaginative or daring. He was a difficult, taciturn man with whom it was nearly impossible to have light conversation. Serious, demanding and dismissive, he was almost incapable of charm. A man, in short, about whom it is hard to effuse, not one to inspire poetry. After a hard and unpleasant private talk with Jimmy Carter at the White House, the President asked Rabin if he'd like to hear little Amy, Carter's daughter, play the piano. ''No,'' Rabin characteristically replied. He then proceeded to grind out a cigarette butt in the White House carpet.
Sounds like poetry (or, rather, urban legend) to me. But it's a cool story.