Tens of thousands of Israelis packed the Tel Aviv square where Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated 10 years ago to mourn and express hope Saturday that his memory would spur new peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
Rabin's killing by an ultra-nationalist Jew opposed to the premier's peace efforts with the Palestinians stunned the country, revealing the depths of Israel's internal conflicts and damaging chances for peace.
"I loved him very much, and I was in awe of his ability to move from being a soldier to being a peacemaker, a politician to a statesman," said former president Bill Clinton, who forged a bond with the Israeli leader as they sought to broker peace in the Middle East.
"If he were here, he would say: 'There is enough of all this missing. If you really think I lived a good life, if you think I made a noble sacrifice in death, than for goodness sakes take up my work and see it through to the end,' " Clinton said.
Security was tight at the rally Saturday, with 1,500 police and security personnel deployed out of fear that Palestinians or right-wing Jews would attack, police said. There were no reports of violence or arrests.
Mourners sang peace songs, held candles and waved Israeli flags as they celebrated Rabin as a strong leader who loved his people and made the ultimate sacrifice for peace.
"I stood here with him exactly 10 years ago," said Vice Premier Shimon Peres, who shared the Nobel Peace Prize with Rabin and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. "I was able to see what he saw, you wonderful people, you young people jumped into that pool there, cheering 'Long live peace, long live Yitzhak.' He was moved to the depths of his soul by that love and support." Rabin was shot and killed as he left the rally on Nov. 4, 1995, by Yigal Amir, an extremist Jew who considered Rabin a traitor for making concessions to the Palestinians. Amir is serving a life sentence for the killing.