Yehoshua Rabinowitz Dead at 67

Former Finance Minister Yehoshua Rabinowitz died today at the age of 67 Hadassah Hospital here. Rabinowitz, who was also a former Mayor of Tel Aviv, suffered a heart attack Sunday at the funeral of David Horowitz, former Governor of the Bank of Israel.

Born in Poland on Nov. 13, 1911, he graduated from the Teachers Seminary in Vilna, and was principal of a Hebrew high school. Active in the Hecholutz movement in Poland, he made aliya in 1934. He was active in the Histadrut’s cooperative movement and is credited with having been one of the founders of the Histadrut’s Hamashbir Latzarchan supermarket chain.

Rabinowitz was elected to the Tel Aviv Municipal Council in 1956 and was mayor from 1969-73. He initiated many major building projects, such as the new central bus station, Dizengoff Center, the Lamad Plan Estate, all of which are just now being completed to give Tel Aviv the look of a modern, thriving metropolis.

After losing the mayoral election to Likud’s Shlomo Lahat, he was appointed Minister of Housing by then Premier Golda Meir. When Yitzhak Rabin became Premier, Rabinowitz served as Finance Minister, succeeding his longtime friend and mentor Pinchas Sapir. As an opposition Labor Alignment MK in the current Knesset, Rabinowitz was strongly critical of the Likud government’s economic policies, which he blamed for Israel’s galloping inflation rate.

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