Simcha Dinitz Passes Away

September 23, 2003

Simcha Dinitz, who served as Israel’s Ambassador to the United States from 1973-1978, passed away at the age of 74. Considered one of Israel’s greatest diplomats, Dinitz began his career in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1958. It was during his time as Ambassador to the United States that Dinitz played a key role in helping Israel secure weapons from the United States during the October 1973 Yom Kippur War. Former United States’ Secretary of State Henry Kissinger said of Dinitz, “He was a superb representative of his country, whose role in saving his country in the 1973 war has never been adequately appreciated.”

From 1984 he served in the Knesset until he resigned in 1988. In 1986 he served as the Chairman of the Executive of the World Zionist Organization and Jewish Agency for Israel. During his time there, over one million Jews emigrated from Russia. In 1991, he coordinated Operation Solomon, the one-day airlift that brought in over 14,000 Ethiopian Jews. In 1995, he stepped down after charges were brought against him. He was acquitted of one and had the other overturned on appeal.

For a memorandum of Conversation of a July 3, 1973 meeting between Kissinger, Dinitz, Brent Scowcroft and Mordechai Shalev: Click Here

The photo shows Prime Minister Golda Meir meeting with Kissinger (left) and Simcha Dinitz (right) in February 1973.