Los Angeles intersection named for Rabin

LOS ANGELES — Yitzhak Rabin Square was dedicated this week in an emotional ceremony in which Leah Rabin, the widow of the slain Israeli leader, and civic leaders paid tribute to his vision and courage.

"We are dedicating a piece of the City of Angels, which holds the world's second largest Jewish community, in the name of your husband," Mayor Richard Riordan told Leah Rabin at the hourlong ceremony Sunday.

The dedication at two major intersections was heavy on symbolism and analogies.

Israeli Consul General Yoram Ben-Ze'ev spoke of Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr., "who were also murdered for their dreams."

Riordan alluded to Moses, "who did not finish his journey. So Yitzhak Rabin was left on the banks of the river of peace. We must cross the river on his behalf."

Leah Rabin extended the Moses analogy with both humor and sorrow.

"I think Yitzhak was much happier than Moshe, who shlepped with these people for 40 years," she said.

"Moshe also brought down the Ten Commandments, of which the most important is `Thou Shalt Not Kill,' and which has been so terribly violated.

"But despite our pain and loss, the train of peace goes forward."

Rabin was fatally shot after a Nov. 4 peace rally in Tel Aviv. His confessed killer, religious law student Yigal Amir, was sentenced last month to life in prison.

The site of the rally in Tel Aviv was also renamed Yitzhak Rabin Square.

The treaty ending the Mexican-American War was signed at the Los Angeles site in 1847.

The actual location of L.A.'s Yitzhak Rabin Square is the intersection of Lankershim and Ventura boulevards, two major traffic arteries in the San Fernando Valley area of metropolitan Los Angeles.