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Rabin Rapped by Labor Party Leaders for His Criticism of Peres

August 14, 1979
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Former Israeli Premier Yitzhak Rabin was lambasted by Labor Party Shimon Peres but the party bureau decided not to pass a resolution rebuking him.

Peres who Rabin accuses in his autobiography of undermining his leadership when Peres was Defense Minister in the Rabin government, said there was no need for a resolution since he considers the matter closed. “Having heard what all members have said, I feel they have confidence in me,” Peres said.

The only Labor Party leader to defend Rabin during the four-hour meeting was former Foreign Minister Yigal Allan. “The party needs both Peres and Rabin,” Allon declared. He criticized the all out assaults against the former Premier.

Rabin appeared to take the ordeal philosophically although the outcome left no doubt that Peres emerged the unchallenged leader of the party despite Rabin’s hopes to replace him. “I knew I would have to go through this ordeal,” He said. “But I shall still make myself heard.” He said his book speaks for him.

Rabin said he sticks by his autobiography in which he accuses Peres of lying and leaking State secrets in order to undermine Rabin as Premier. The book is being serialized in Maariv, but portions were first revealed by Israel Television causing a storm within the Labor Party.

“I am not the first to write an autobiographical book,” Rabin said. He noted that the late Premier Moshe Sharett wrote an autobiography in which he criticized many Labor Party leaders, including his party rival, David Ben Gurion.

During the debate last night, former Justice Minister Haim Zadok said the book had “damaged Rabin’s credibility and the belief in his balanced judgement and showed how personal enmity could affect an author’s senses.” Labor Party secretary general Haim Barlev said the book has helped Premier Menachem Begin’s government.

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