"What started with a marriage license, permission to have a child and a brit, will end up with a murderer walking among us with his children, happy and free," Yuval Rabin told an estimated 150,000 people who assembled in Tel Aviv's Kikar Rabin Saturday night to mark 12 years since the assassination of his father, prime minister Yitzhak Rabin.
The ceremony paid homage to the slain leader, but also served to demonstrate opposition to the court decision allowing his killer to take part in his newborn son's brit mila on Sunday, the anniversary of the murder according to the Gregorian calendar.
"It is inconceivable that as we gather here, just a few kilometers away, the brit mila of the son of my father's assassin, Yigal Amir, is being prepared," Rabin told the crowd, referring to the ruling enabling the circumcision ceremony at Rimonin Prison, near Beersheba. "It is inconceivable that with emotional indifference, while ignoring public opinion, the state prosecution supports, the attorney-general backs, and the High Court approves a shameful decision like the one approved by the court two days ago."
On Friday, the High Court of Justice rejected three petitions against the decision to allow Amir to hold his son's brit at the prison.
Yuval Rabin warned that Amir's release was "tangible and close."
"Don't satisfy yourself with the belief that it won't happen," he said to much applause.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak promised that Amir would remain within prison walls for rest of his life.
"His punishment will not be shortened and he will never ever be pardoned," said Barak. "The gates of prison will be closed to him until his last days."
President Shimon Peres called on those in the square to act as Rabin's heirs and to fulfill his vision.
Barak echoed Peres in mentioning the hopes for peace embodied by the rally, saying "The energy here in the square and the power of this togetherness are the hope and the chance for a better Israel. You are the source of our power."
Barak said he regretted the inaction in 1995 by government officials who failed to react appropriately to the "writing on the wall" and to the violence by religious extremists protesting against Rabin's peace efforts during the weeks leading up to his murder. The defense minister recalled a cabinet meeting at the time when Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, now national infrastructures minister, slammed his fist on the table and said, "This will end in murder."
Turning to the present, Barak said, "Our test is Annapolis... to go toward it with judgment and confidence, to open diplomatic horizons wherever possible. We promise that you, Yitzhak, that the path you chose will win the day."
"Annapolis... is a hope and not a threat," Barak said.
Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski and Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai also addressed the rally.
The evening also included performances by leading Israeli singers such as Aviv Gefen, Rami Kleinstein, Sarit Hadad and Ahinoam Nini.