A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
July 1, 2007 Katzav Plea Bargain Grips Israel/Olmert to Appoint New Finance Minister With No Experience
The news in Israel continues to be dominated by the plea agreement with former President Katsav. Thousands demonstrated last night in Tel Aviv against the agreement. There has been widespread criticism by legal experts, political commentators, and women groups. The amazing thing is that observers have stated that the State Prosecutor's office was expecting criticism, but has been shocked by the level of outrage. That very fact shows how out of touch they are. The plea agreement, which reduced the charges under which Katsav will receive a suspended sentence, has been put on temporary hold while the Supreme Court reviews the case. Most observers believe that the Court will not intervene.
In another case of how poor the Israeli political system is: Prime Minister Olmert is expected to announce the appointment of Ronnie Bar-On as the new Minister of Finance. It is not important that he has no financial experience, and has had a lackluster record as Minister of Interior, now he moves on to bigger and better things: The Ministry of Finance. What made Olmert pick him? Bar-On is one of Olmert's closest supporters. He would not want to appoint someone who had some experience to this lowly job would he?
The most popular children show in Gaza has been a show that has a Mickey Mouse character that claims to be a grandchild of refugees. The mouse wants to be a Shihad (a suicide bomber). The show had its final episode this weekend. In the final episode the Mouse gets captured by Israelis on the way to look for its ancestral home. The Mouse then gets stabbed to death on screen by Israeli interrogators. After the show ends, a commentator gets on television and tells all the children watching that mouse has achieved its goal and now is a Shihad. That's Gaza 2007 for you.