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Israel’s Last Founding Father

During his nearly seven-decade career, Shimon Peres reached lofty heights and suffered humiliating failures. A security hawk who became an ardent peacemaker, he maintained a love-hate relationship with an Israeli public that declined to elect him Prime Minister but admired him when he neither held nor sought real power.

TEL AVIV – In 2006, a year before Shimon Peres was elected as Israel’s president, Michael Bar-Zohar published the Hebrew edition of his Peres biography. It was aptly titled Like a Phoenix: by then, Peres had been active in Israeli politics and public life for more than 60 years.