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On March 8, 1949, a civilian plane belonging to Air France took off from Lod. Shortly after takeoff, a malfunction was discovered and the plane was forced to make an emergency landing at the Beirut airport. One of the passengers was Levi Eshkol, one of the leaders of the Mapai party at the time. Negotiations were being held then between Israel and Lebanon on a cease-fire agreement, so Israel turned to the United...