Israeli News: A Daily Analysis
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A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman

October 21 , 2007 Campaign to Free Amir- Putin and Oil

The hard right has begun a campaign to free Prime Minister Rabin's murderer, Yigal Amir. Israeli television has shown aspects of the video, of which 15,000 copies are being distributed. It portrays Amir as a hero who was willing to give up his life for the country. The fact that he killed someone seems to escape them.

At the moment, most of efforts of Amir's supporters are directed at getting Amir released for his son's expected Brit Milah next week. 55% of Israelis oppose letting him out for the Brit, while 34% support it. On the other hand, within the religious and Haredi community, 68% support him being allowed to go to the Brit while only 20% oppose.

A story came out today that a group of Fatah members planed to attack Prime Minster Olmert when he went to Jericho to meet with Palestinian leader Abbas. The plot was stopped after a tip from the Shin Bet. The plotters were arrested and then released, and supposedly then rearrested today. Nobody is really sure what happened or why this information was released today.

Today it was reported that Israel received a hand written letter from Ron Arad written in 1988 as part of the recent prisoner exchange. The letter itself does not answer the question regarding Arad's fate. But, the fact that Hezbollah was able to get its hands on the letter strengthens the view that Samir Kuntar, the Lebanese terrorist that killed a family Nahariya in 1979, should not be released as part of a prisoner deal for last summerÕs hostages, but be kept in prison until Arad's fate can be determined.

Bill Maher had Alexander Kaspov, the former chess champion of the world, on his show this weekend. He is a public critic of Russian President Putin and provided a rather obvious but different view of what Putin is up to in Iran and elsewhere. His claim is that Putin's popularity is tied to the high price of oil. Most of Putin's actions, Kaspov claimed, can be explained by simply looking at what will keep driving the price of oil up. Any instability he can stir is good for high oil prices.