On this day in 1969 Golda Meir was elected Israel's first female prime minister following the death of Levi Eshkol, having previously served that country as Foreign Minister, Labour Minister, and ambassador to Moscow. Known as the Iron Lady a full decade before Margaret Thatcher, David Ben-Gurion referred to Meir as 'the only man in the Cabinet'.
Meir spent nearly five years in office despite suffering from lymphoma, during which time she ended the War of Attrition; she also ordered the Mossad to assassinate those responsible for the Munich massacre at the 1972 Summer Olympics (known as Operation Wrath of God), and steered Israel through the Yom Kippur War.
She was succeeded by Yitzhak Rabin in June 1974 and died in December 1978. Meir was famously portrayed by Ingrid Bergman in the TV movie A Woman Called Golda (1982), and more recently by Lynn Cohen in Steven Spielberg's film Munich.
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