Minister of Tourism and Member of the Knesset, Major General (Reserves) Rechavam Ze'evy (Gandi), one of the Israeli right-wing leaders and believer in the undivided land of Israel, was assassinated on the morning of Wednesday 17 October 2001, by Palestinian terrorists of the "Popular Front".
Rechavam Ze'evy, known as Gandi, was born in Jerusalem to a family of six generations in Eretz Israel. He joined the "Palmach" in 1944 and after the establishment of the State of Israel he continued to serve in the army as a career officer in command, intelligence and operations units. He was a graduate from the Command and General Staff College of the United States Army.
Ze'evy's last position in the army was Major General of Central Command. After the Yom Kippur war he became Advisor to the Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin on counter-terrorism and in the years 1975-1977 he was Advisor to the Prime Minister on matters of intelligence.
From 1981 to 1991 Ze'evy was Director and later Chairman of the Eretz Israel Museum in Tel Aviv.
In 1985 Ze'evy began to speak publicly about voluntary transfer of Arabs from Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip as the only solution to the Israel-Palestinian problem. In 1988 he founded the "Moledet" movement and represented them in the 12th , 13th and 14th Knessets. In 1991 Rechavam Ze'evy was Minister without Portfolio in Yitzhak Shamir's government and was a member of the Defense Cabinet.
Rechavam Ze'evy was a man of the book and of the spirit, a man of the Hebrew language and research into Eretz Israel. He owned a large and comprehensive library of books on Eretz Israel, edited many books on the subject, which were mainly published by the Ministry of Defense and the Fretz Israel Museum and wrote newspaper articles. The names of his children also reflect his outstanding devotion to Eretz Israel.
Rechavam Ze'evy was a shining example to "Palmach" fighters and IDF soldiers. He was one of the great advocates of the undivided land of Israel and fought with devotion and zeal for Israel's rights and freedom. Even his most acute political rivals admired his integrity and candor.
Ze'evy used to end his speeches with the quote:
"May the Lord give strength to his people! May the Lords bless his people with peace!" (Psalms 29,11)