Shimon Peres, the elderly statesman of Israel who was awarded a Nobel Prize for forging a peace deal in between the Israelis and Palestinians has died. Throughout his life, he served as a constant guiding star for generations and generations of Israeli politicians. The 93 year old man died after he suffered for a massive heart attack 2 weeks ago. Israeli news online sources stated that he was improving but doctors reported that he took a turn towards a worse scenario on Tuesday. He played some of the top leadership roles over the last few decades, including the role of a President and Prime Minister, this Labor Party veteran became the favorite face of the Jewish State. Very soon he became one of those revered gentlemen who were highly respected not only in Israel but throughout the world.
Over 5 decades in politics……
Peres retired from his post publicly in the year 2014 after completing a grand end to this 7-year term as President. In the history of Israeli politics and for over half a century, he proudly held on to every virtual position in Cabinet, from defense minister to Prime Minister, a position which was given to him 3 times. He even fought against Yitzhak Rabin, Israeli PM for leadership in Labor Party in the 1980s and 1990s and then gradually became Rabin’s foreign minister.
During his tenure as foreign minister, Peres signed the Oslo Peace Accords for which he was rewarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 accompanied by Yasser Arafat and Rabin. Bill Clinton once said that he was grateful to him for spending his life dreaming big dreams and planning out realistic ways of achieving them. Post assassination of Rabin in 1995, Peres held on to the post of Prime Minister.
Peres made it into the history of Israel
While he was elected the 9th President of Israel, he addressed the Parliament of Turkey in 2007 and thereby became the first President of Israel to speak to the legislature of a Muslim country. He spoke with the Palestinians for peace talks in 2011 and alerted the UN against identifying Palestine as an independent state. He also received the US Presidential Medal of Freedom in the year 2012 from Barack Obama. After he left office officially in 2014, he continued to remain within the public by carrying forward his work for peace in the Middle East countries.
How people reacted to the death of the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
President Barack Obama: Obama said that though the light has gone out, the hope will help us burn forever. Shimon Peres was an Israeli soldier for the Jewish, for peace, for justice and for the belief that we can be true to ourselves. He thanked Shimon for his precious gift of friendship and epitome of leadership.
John Kerry, US Secretary of State: Israel is lamenting at the loss of one of its most significant founding fathers. The world lost a fighter for peace and also a giant of history.
Pope Francis: The Pope hoped that the fond memory of Peres and his glorious years of service will serve as an inspiration for all to work with greater urgency for reconciliation and peace. His heirloom will always be honored as humanity strives hard to follow his path of peace.
Queen Elizabeth II: The Queen was immensely saddened to know about the death of Shimon Peres. She recalled the last meeting with Mr. Peres in 2008 and she send her heartfelt solace to his family and to the Israeli people who are presently mourning his loss.
As for the present situation after the death of this stalwart, much of his political legacy is currently being abandoned by Netanyahu and the Israelis. They seem to prefer confrontation politics rather than back-slapping shades of diplomacy which Peres excelled in. Nevertheless, his industrial zones are being recognized in an initiative called “Valley of Peace”.