Oct. 23, 1998 — Wye River Memorandum Signed
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat and U.S. President Bill Clinton sign a memorandum recommitting to the Oslo II agreement of September 1995 after nine days of negotiations at the Wye River Plantation in Maryland. Implementation of Oslo II has lapsed since the election of Netanyahu in May 1996, and Palestinian and Israeli leaders want the United States to play a larger role.
Oct. 24, 1940 — Politician Yossi Sarid Is Born
Yossi Sarid, a two-time Cabinet minister known as “Israel’s moral compass,” is born in Rehovot. He becomes the spokesman of the governing Mapai party at age 24, and he serves as a spokesman, a speechwriter and an adviser for David Ben-Gurion, Levi Eshkol and others. He is a member of the Knesset from 1973 to 1983 with Mapai’s successor, Alignment. He helps launch Meretz in 1992 and serves as its leader from 1996 to 2003.
Oct. 25, 1976 — World Chess Olympiad Opens in Haifa
Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and the president of the International Chess Federation, Max Euwe, open the 22nd Chess Olympiad in Haifa despite a boycott led by the Soviet Union. Only 48 of the 90-plus nations in the federation send teams, but some 450 players compete, including many Russian Jews who have earned strong reputations since emigrating from the Soviet Union. In the absence of the Soviets, the Americans win the title.
Oct. 26, 1943 — Journalist Ron Ben-Yishai Is Born
Ron Ben-Yishai, a war correspondent and a 2018 Israel Prize recipient, is born in Jerusalem. He begins working for Kol Yisrael, Israel’s leading radio station, as a financial reporter in 1966. He is wounded twice while covering the War of Attrition and switches to television in late 1969. Perhaps best known for his First Lebanon War reporting, he later covers wars around the world for TV, radio and print outlets and produces investigative documentaries.
Oct. 27, 2018 — Israel Strikes 80 Gaza Targets
After an overnight barrage of roughly 30 rockets from the Gaza Strip toward Israeli border towns, the Israeli Air Force hits 80 Gaza targets, including Hamas weapons production and military facilities, training sites, and observation posts. Palestinian Islamic Jihad claims responsibility for the rocket attacks, saying they are in retaliation for the deaths of four protesters during the weekly Great March of Return demonstration at the Gaza border fence.
Oct. 28, 1948 — Israel Adopts State Flag
The iconic banner with two blue stripes and a blue Star of David at its center becomes the official Israeli flag more than five months after the establishment of the state. The flag, adopted by the First Zionist Congress in Basel in 1897, had become accepted by Jewish communities throughout the world as the emblem of Zionism. The decision to make that symbol the flag of the state of Israel reflects the power of the Zionist movement.
Oct. 29, 1956 — Arabs Massacred at Kfar Kassem
Israeli troops kill 48 Israeli Arabs returning from their fields at dusk in Kfar Kassem. The Israeli invasion of the Sinai that day puts military units in the Arab Triangle on high alert. Arab-heavy parts of Israel have been under a curfew since 1948, but Col. Yissachar Shadmi illegally makes it earlier in Kfar Kassem. The villagers thus are unknowingly violating the curfew when they run into soldiers who are under orders to shoot to kill.
Items are provided by the Center for Israel Education