BARAM, UZI (1937– ), Israeli politician. Member of the Ninth to Fifteenth Knessets. Born in Jerusalem and the son of moshe baram , Uzi Baram studied political science and sociology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1964–65 he was chairman of the Mapai National Students Union and in 1965 was one of the founders of the Young Guard in Mapai, serving as its secretary general in 1968–70. In 1970–72 Baram was responsible for the emigration of academics from North America in the Jewish Agency offices in New York and in 1972–74 he was chairman of the Future Generation Section in the Jewish Agency. In 1975–77 he was secretary of the Jerusalem Branch of the Labor Party. Baram was first elected to the Knesset in 1977. In the Tenth Knesset he served as chairman of the Knesset Immigration and Absorption Committee, and in the years 1984–89 as secretary general of the Labor Party, fighting for the internal democratization of the Labor Party and the adoption of primaries for the election of its leaders, Knesset list, and candidates for mayor. In 1984 Baram tried to get former President Yitzḥak Navon to run for the Labor Party leadership against shimon peres , but was unsuccessful. In 1988 he fought against Labor's entry into another National Unity Government under Shamir, believing that under the changed circumstances Labor would suffer ideologically and electorally. Baram, who supported Yitzḥak Rabin in his leadership contest against Peres, was appointed minister of tourism in the government Rabin formed after the elections. He strongly supported the Oslo Accords. He served briefly as minister of the interior in 1995 but resigned for personal reasons. In the primaries for the Labor list towards the elections to the Fourteenth Knesset, Baram was unexpectedly elected to first place on the list after Shimon Peres. After Peres' defeat in the elections, Baram was one of those who demanded his resignation. He considered running for the party leadership, but finally decided not to and supported ehud barak in the 1997 Labor leadership contest. He was not, however, appointed to a ministerial position in Barak's government. Like many other promising Labor politicians of his generation, Baram became disenchanted with developments in the party and decided to leave active politics towards the elections to the Sixteenth Knesset. Subsequently he was regularly invited by the media to act as a political commentator. (Susan Hattis Rolef (2nd ed.)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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