On this day

On this day: Seinfeld airs for the first time

By Jennifer Lipman, May 25, 2011

Regularly topping those "best shows of all time" polls, Seinfeld, which ran from 1990 to 1998, was very much a Jewish comedy.

Audiences spent nine seasons watching actor Jerry Seinfeld play a geeky and neurotic Manhattan singleton contemplating life, love and pretty much anything with his friends Elaine, George and Kramer.

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On this day: Israel withdraws from southern Lebanon

By Jennifer Lipman, May 25, 2011

After 22 years of military involvement in the region, Israeli troops left Lebanon and made way for United Nations peacekeepers in armoured cars.

Some 1,000 Israeli soldiers had lost their lives there in the past two decades (the fate of others, like IAF navigator Ron Arad, remains unknown) making the farewell more than a little bittersweet.

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On this day: Himmler commits suicide

By Jennifer Lipman, May 23, 2011

After Germany surrendered to allied troops on May 8, Heinrich Himmler was arrested by the British and imprisoned in Germany.

Rather than face questioning and trial, the SS official committed suicide by biting on a cyanide capsule, denying the world of the chance to bring him to justice.

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On this day: Operation Solomon

By Jennifer Lipman, May 19, 2011

In one of the most impressive rescue missions in history, Israel achieved what seemed impossible. In a day, as Jews around the world celebrated Shavuot, more than 14,000 Ethiopian Jews were airlifted to Israel, the country they had long hoped to see.

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On this day: Nora Ephron is born

By Jennifer Lipman, May 19, 2011

One of the most prominent female filmmakers working today, Nora Ephron's life has included a high-profile marriage and divorce, critical and popular acclaim and a close-up view of the Watergate investigation.

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On this day: Barak beats Bibi

By Jennifer Lipman, May 17, 2011

Twelve years later, two of Israel's longest-serving statesmen are still at it, with Binyamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister and Ehud Barak his coalition partner and Defence Minister, now of the new Independence Party.

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On this day: Chaim Weizmann elected

By Jennifer Lipman, May 16, 2011

Two days after David Ben Gurion declared Israel's independence and the surrounding Arab armies attacked, the fledgling state voted in its first president. He would not be officially sworn in until the following February

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On this day: Israel joins the UN

By Jennifer Lipman, May 11, 2011

Almost a year after David Ben Gurion declared independence for the Jewish state; Israel was welcomed into the global club.

With something of a fraught relationship between the two since, it was nonetheless a positive step. Twelve countries voyted against welcoming the 59th members, including Afghanistan, India and Iraq, while nine, among them Britain, Denmark and Greece, abstained.

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On this day: Nelson Mandela is inaugurated

By Jennifer Lipman, May 10, 2011

After a decades-long struggle, Nelson Mandela's Africa National Congress party won a majority in South Africa's first multi-racial elections.

A fortnight later, the prominent activist and former political prisoner was sworn in as the country's first black president, an unbelievable occasion in a country that had only recently thrown off apartheid rule.

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On this day: Liberation of the Sabena jet

By Jennifer Lipman, May 9, 2011

On May Sabena flight 571 from Brussels to Tel Aviv was hijacked outside of Vienna with 90 passengers and 10 crew members on board.

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