PRIME MINISTER YITZHAK SHAMIR:
A FOUNDING FATHER OF THE STATE OF ISRAEL
Prime Minister of Israel 1983-4 and 1986-92; served longer in this office than any of his predecessors except David Ben Gurion.
Foreign Minister 1980-6.
Speaker of the Knesset 1977- 80.
Member of the Knesset 1972- 1996, re-elected continuously through six General Elections.
Graduated Hebrew Secondary School, Bialystok. Joined Betar Zionist Youth Movement, interrupted Law studies at Warsaw in order to emigrate in 1933 to Eretz Israel (then British Mandatory Palestine), and enrolled at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Underground Freedom Fighter for the independence of Israel; joined the Irgun Zvai Leumi, later a member and principal operational commander of the Lechi ("Freedom Fighters of Israel") triumvirate leadership.
Businessman and Industrial Manager; later, senior Secret Service official in the Mossad.
1915 - Born Ruzinoy, Poland
1935 - Aliyah to Eretz Israel
1937 - Joined the Etzel (Irgun Zvai Leumi)
1940-1 - Followed Avraham Stern ("Yair") into the Lechi (Lochamei Herut Yisrael)
1941 - Arrested and imprisoned by British Mandate authorities
1943-Escaped and joined the triumvirate leadership of Lechi (with Dr. Yisrael Eldad and Nathan Yellin-Mor)
1946 - Re-arrested, exiled to prison camp in British Eritrea
1947 - Escaped to French Djibouti, granted political asylum in France
1948 - Returned to independent Israel, resumed Lechi command until the organization disbanded when the Israel Defence Forces (Zahal) were founded
1949 - Managed various commercial enterprises
1955 - Senior security service (Mossad) officer
1965 - Returned to private commercial activity; active in the campaign to free Soviet Jewry
1970 - Joined Herut Movement, elected to the Exec. C'ttee, directed the Party's Immigrants Dept. and later, the Organization Dept.
1973 - Elected to the Knesset on the Likud list; Member of the Knesset Foreign Affairs & Defense and State Comptroller's Committees
1975 - Elected chairman of Herut Exec. C'ttee
1977 - Re-elected to the Knesset; Elected Speaker of the Knesset. As Speaker, presided at the address of Anwar Sadat and over the debate on the Peace Treaty with Egypt
1980 - Joined the cabinet of Prime Minister Menachem Begin in March and succeeded Moshe Dayan as Minister of Foreign Affairs
1981 - Re-elected to the Knesset. As Foreign Minister; guided negotiations on the post- Treaty "Normalization" talks with Egypt covering the implementation of the Peace Treaty; initiated diplomatic contacts with various African states and succeeded in several cases in re-establishing relations broken off during the Yom Kippur War; directed negotiations with Lebanon leading to the 1983 Agreement with that country.
1983 - Succeeded Begin in October as Prime Minister of Israel. As Prime Minister, presided over early stages of economic recovery plan.
1984 - Re-elected to the Knesset as leader of Likud. In September, became Minister of Foreign Affairs and Vice- Premier in the Govt. of National Unity (the "Rotation" Govt.) whose establishment he initiated. As Foreign Minister: Together with Defense Minister Moshe Arens, met with President Reagan and Defense Secretary Weinberger to create a framework for USA/Israel Strategic Co-operation, and the USA/Israel Free Trade Area.
1986 - Succeeded Shimon Peres as Prime Minister in the Unity Government. As Prime Minister: concentrated on Economic Recovery and signed agreement with President Reagan institutionalizing all prior Israeli/US arrangements, and achieved formal US recognition of Israel as a major non-NATO ally.
1989 - Re-elected to the Knesset as leader of Likud, and founded a new Government of National Unity which fell in 1990. Formed a new coalition, and continued as Prime Minister. As Prime Minister: Concentrated on the Peace Process, the Peace Initiative of May 1989, absorption of the mass Aliyah from the U.S.S.R.; architect of the policy which brought Israel through the Gulf War, gave the "Operation Solomon" order for the airlift/rescue of Ethiopian Jewry, and the Madrid Conference which began the Multilateral Regional Talks and the direct negotiations of the Washington Rounds of the Peace Process with Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and the Arabs of Judea, Samaria and Gaza.
1992 - Re-elected to the Knesset as leader of Likud, and served as Leaser of the Opposition. Stepped down from Party leadership in March 1993, when Likud elected Bibi Netanyahu as its new chairman.
Mr. Shamir's parents and the rest of his family perished in the Holocaust. He is married to Shulamith, an olah from Bulgaria, for over 50 years. The couple have two children, and five grandchildren. He speaks Hebrew, Yiddish, English, French, Polish and some Russian.
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