January 6: Joseph Almogi is the new chairman of the Executive of the World Zionist Organization and the Jewish Agency. He is a formerly cabinet member and mayor of Haifa.
The overwhelming majority of émigrés from the Soviet Union who leave on visas for Israel drop out in Vienna and choose to resettle in the West. Several American Jerwish organizations facilitate their entry and resettlement in the United States as political refugees.
June: Max Fisher, chairman of the Board of Governors of the Jewish Agency, presents a previously prepared American position paper which proposes ceasing aid to those Soviet émigrés with Israeli visas who “dropped out” in Vienna. Those not wanting to go to Israel would have to apply in the Soviet Union for visas to other countries on the basis of family reunification. American Jewish organizations would pressure their government for visas for family reunification and provide aid to the refugees. They would discourage non-Jewish organizations from helping dropouts. Fisher wants secret deliberations by a committee of 4 Americans and 4 Israelis to develop a single unified Israeli and American policy.
Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin appoints a committee of 8 professionals to develop recommendations for the joint government Jewish Agency Coordinating Committee in 90 days. Nehemiah Levanon of the LiaisonBureau and Ralph Goldman (JDC) Exec VP) coordinated. Other members included Yehuda Avner (PM office) Uzi Narkiss of the Jewish Agency, Zeev Szek of the Foreign Office (and former Ambassador to Austria), Phil Bernstein (CJF), Gaynor Jacobson (HIAS) and Irving Kessler (UIA).
August 12-14: In the Geneva meetings, the Committee of 8 deals with all aspects of emigration from the Soviet Union including transition through Europe and resettlement in Israel and the West.
Alternate Chairman of the Executive of the WZO - Jewish Agency, American Section: Charlotte Jacobson.
Treasurer of the Jewish Agency: Arie Dulzin.
Chairman Settlement Department: Raanan Weitz.
Chairman Youth Aliyah Department:Yosef Klarman.
Chairman Immigration and Absorption: Joseph Almogi.
Labor Zionist leader Eliyahu Dobkin (1898-1976) dies. He headed the Jewish Agency's Immigration Department during World War II, dealing with the rescue of Jews from Europe and illegal immigration, was a member of the Jewish Agency Executive (1946-48), head of the Jewish Agency's Youth and Hehalutz Department (1951-68), and chairman of Keren Hayesod (1951-62).
New immigrants in 1976: 19,754.
January 12: Katyushas are fired by the PLO at northern settlements. The IDF responds with artillery barrages.
January 28 : Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin addresses a joint session of Congress, the first Israeli prime minister to do so. He says that he is "ready to meet any Arab head of government at any time and in any place. ... There is no substitute for direct person-to-person contact."
January: Faruq Khaddoumi, PLO spokesman, addresses the UN Security Council and declares that the PLO regards Israel's creation as a violation of the UN Charter.
January: The US vetoes the UN Security Council resolution that calls for an Israeli withdrawal from all Arab territories occupied since 1967 and the establishment of a Palestinian Arab State.
January: The civil war in Lebanon intensifies. Israel opens its border to Christian fugitives. Syria's Hafiz al-Assad shifts support in Lebanon's civil war from Lebanese and Palestinian Muslims and uses Syrian troops to restore the military balance that had been turning against the Christians. By January 1976 PLO forces had captured the Christian town of Damour, south of Beirut, massacring 150 to 200 of its inhabitants and expelling the rest.
February 16: The government introduces a 15% tax on the import of services, including travel abroad.
February 20: The IDF completes its withdrawal from the Gidi and the Mitla Passes in compliance with the disengagement agreement.
March 12: Israel's main Christian partner in Lebanon is to be Pierre Gemayel's Maronite Phalange Party, based in East Beirut. Phalange chief of operations Joseph Abu Khalil, travels to Haifa and meets with Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Foreign Minister Yigal Allon to ask for supply of weapons and ammunition.
March 14: New economic measures are instituted raising the prices of basic commodities by 25% and abolishing subsidies. The "creeping" devaluation brings the exchange rate to IL 7,52 to the dollar.
March 21: The prime minister's security adviser, Ariel Sharon, resigns.
March 30: Land Day, a protest against land appropriation, is marked by the Arabs in Israel. Clashes with the police result in the death of 6 Arabs and the wounding of 12 security officers.
April 9: The first columns of the Syrian Army enter Lebanon. The Maronite Militia leaders welcome the Syrian intervention, the PLO stands against it.
April 15: David Elazar, chief of staff during the Yom Kippur War, dies at age 51.
April 21: The Israeli government issues a statement asserting its "deep concern" over the Syrian entry into Lebanon. It also asserts that it won't intervene in Lebanon unless the Syrian troops cross the "red line", i.e. the Litani River.
April 28: A terrorist explosion in the center of Jerusalem results in the death of two police officers, with four persons wounded. There will be another explosion on 3 May.
April: In a major speech on Middle East policy, Democratic presidential candidate Jimmy Carter expresses his view that "the Jewish people are entitled to one place on this earth where they can have their own state, one given to them from time immemorial." He emphasizes that sympathy for the Palestinians should "not lead us to recognize the existence of brutal terrorists who masquerade as their representatives in the world forum."
May 9: The government decides on a policy supporting the right of Jewish settlement on both sides of the Green Line, the pre-1967 border, but only within the context of approved plans.
June 1: Syrian military intervention in Lebanon. The Syrian army enters Lebanon in February 1976 at the invitation of the Christian leadership, which fears that Muslim and Palestinian forces will defeat them in the civil war. For President Hafez Assad, it is not only an invitation but an opportunity to return to enforcing Syrian will over Lebanon, which was disconnected from Syria at the end of the French mandate over both countries. Damascus continues to regard Lebanon as a Syrian province, for political, security and economic purposes.
June 27 : An Air France plane en route from Israel to Paris with 247 passengers is hijacked by pro-Palestinian terrorists shortly after takeoff from Athens. The plane is flown to Entebbe, Uganda, where President Idi Amin tells the hostages he supports the Palestinian cause and the hijackers demand for the release of captives.
July 1: A value added tax of 8% is introduced.
July 2:All non-Israeli passengers are released from the plane as a result of French government efforts.
July 3-4: Operation Yonatan: Israeli commandos under the command of General Dan Shomron fly to Entebbe and rescue the Israeli hostages. Seven terrorists, twenty Ugandan soldiers, three hostages, and two Israeli soldiers, including the leader of the rescue force, Lieutenant Colonel Yonatan Netanyahu, are killed. Dora Bloch, a 74-year old hostage, who had been taken to a local hospital, is later killed by the Ugandans.
July 11: Rina Mor-Messinger wins the Miss Universe title.
July 18: The Israeli lira is linked to a currency basket of US, German, French, Dutch, and British currencies.
July: IDF Colonel Binyamin Ben-Eliezer is taken to the Phalange command post to view the battle for the Tel al-Za'atar refugee camp. Pierre Gemayel's son Bashir is identified as a powerful ally and rising star.
August 11: Terrorists attack an El Al plane at the Istanbul airport, killing four and wounding 21.
August 16: Grocers strike for three days in protest against the value added tax.
August: Israel opens the "Good Fence". At the northern town of Metulla, an official border crossing point with customs and money exchange is created. It is the idea of Shimon Peres. Tens of thousands of Christian and Muslim Lebanese are to make use of this crossing point to enter Israel.
August: Former Lebanese president Camille Chamoun travels to Haifa to meet Prime Minister Rabin. During the following months, Rabin meets repeatedly with Chamoun, Gemayel and his two sons Bashir and Amin. (Gemayel: "I have been forced to turn to you, but I am filled with shame and dismay.") Rabin is persuaded to send aid - Sherman tanks, LAW antitank rockets, M-16 rifles, and Soviet-made T-54s and T-55s. In 1982, Israeli officials will estimate that the Lebanese Christians had bought 118,5 million dollar worth of arms from Israel.
September 25: A large-scale terrorist incident scheduled for Rosh Hashana is prevented when five Palestinian terrorists are caught landing a boat on the Tel Aviv shore.
September/October: There are nearly 30,000 Syrian troops in Lebanon. Leaders of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, and the PLO hold a summit at Riyadh. The Syrian army in Lebanon is legitimized as a peace-keeping force and Yasir Arafat is urged to suspend PLO military activities.
October 3: Incited Arab crowds burst into the Makhpelah cave in Hebron on Yom Kippur eve, destroy the synagogue there, and deface Torah scrolls.
October: Yitzhak Rabin makes a secret journey to Morocco.
November: A new political party, the Democratic Movement, is formed by Professor Yigael Yadin. He calls for electoral reform, a quest for peace with the Arabs even at the expense of territorial compromise, and an effort to improve social and economic conditions.
Ariel Sharon decides to leave the Likud and run for the next Knesset elections on an independent list.
December 11: The first F-15 fighters arrive from the US, landing just after the start of Shabbat. The religious parties are angered.
December 14: The Torah Front party calls for a vote of no confidence in the government because of the violation of Shabbat on 11 December. The proposal is supported by other parties, led by the Likud, but is defeated. The National Religious Party, which is in coalition, abstains.
December 19 : Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin demands the resignation of the NRP ministers from the government in light of their abstention. When they refuse, Rabin submits his resignation to the president. Labor and Mapam call for early elections.
Minister of Finance Yehoshua Rabinowitz manages to reduce inflation to 31.3% in 1976.
The Israel Museum exhibits "Archaeological Discoveries in the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem" from the Second Temple Period.
Israeli archaeologist Ze'ev Meshel announces the discovery of several Hebrew inscriptions at what he believes was an 8th-century BCE way station and shrine on the border between the Negev and the Sinai Peninsula at modern Kuntillet Ajrud. One of the large jars features a painting of a god and goddess and an inscription invoking the blessing of "YHWH [the Lord] and his consort[?]/ Asherah[?]/shrine[?]." Many scholars see in this evidence of a nonbiblical Israelite worship of male and female deities.
"The Eighty-First Blow", a film documentary, describes the Holocaust in chronological detail. it is one of a trilogy of documentary films produced for the Ghetto Fighters' House. The other films are "The Last Sea" (1984), describing survivors when they reach Palestine, and "Flame in the Ashes" (1987), which examines Jewish resistance in the Holocaust.
February: The Second World Conference of Jewish Communities on Soviet Jewry is held in Brussels, Belgium, with 1,200 delegates from 32 countries in attendance.
May: At its national meeting in Johannesburg, the South African Jewish Board of Deputies unanimously condemns the policy of apartheid.
May 12 : The first Helsinki Watchdog group is organized in Moscow. Its purpose is to inform the signatory states of any violations of the 1975 Helsinki Accord. Among its members are Yuri Orlov, who serves as chairman; Elena Bonner, the wife of Andrei Sakharov; Vladimir Slepak; Aleksandr Ginzburg; and Anatoly Sharansky.
July: The Soviet Union's only Jewish cosmonaut, Colonel Boris Volynov, commands the two-man Soyuz-21 spacecraft.
Irving Howe, US social and literary critic, writes "World of Our Fathers", a social and cultural history of eastern European Jewish immigrants on New York's Lower East Side. It wins him a National Book Award and becomes a bestseller.
Saul Bellow, US novelist, is awarded the Nobel Prize in literature for his "exuberant ideas, flashing irony, hilarious comedy and burning compassion."
The "Lilith" magazine is founded in the US. It becomes a vehicle for the discussion of Jewish feminist issues.
James Levine, the grandson of a cantor and composer of liturgical music, is appointed music director of New York's Metropolitan Opera.
Milton Friedman, US economist, wins the Nobel Prize in economics. His philosophy is generally associated with a laissez-faire, or hands-off, policy in regard to business and trade.
Baruch S. Blumberg, US researcher, is awarded the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for his research on blood leading to discoveries of the origins and spread of infectious diseases.
Burton Richter, US physicist, is awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for the discovery of the subatomic psi particle.
The Jewish Museum in New York holds a retrospective exhibition of the art of Ludwig Yehuda Wolpert (1900-1981), a major designer. he is the first metalworker to apply the Bauhaus aesthetic principles - form and function are mutually dependent, fine design should be aimed at mass production, and ornament should be banned - to the fabrication of Jewish ceremonial art.
Jacques Derrida, French philosopher born in Algeria, publishes in English one of his major works, "Of Grammatology". Derrida understands writing to be the most apt metaphor for reality because it represents the trace of what is no longer there. Derrida's analytical method of "deconstruction", which shows that meaning is unstable, makes a significant impact on literary criticism.