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Friday, August 10, 2007

Smile! You're on Candid Camera!

Defense Minister Ehud Barak got caught saying something that he really did not want people to hear him saying:
A peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians will not be reached for at least three to five years; Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper reported Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak as saying.

Yedioth Ahronoth said on Friday that in private conversations, Barak said the idea of reaching a peace deal with the Palestinians anytime soon was a "fantasy".

He also said that Israel would not withdraw from the West Bank before finding a solution to Palestinian rocket attacks, "which will take between three to five years".

Barak said he would not approve the removal of roadblocks from the West Bank, despite assurances given this week by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that some of the hundreds of checkpoints would be removed.

Olmert's meetings with Abbas would not lead to a final peace accord, the defense minister said.

"What will determine the situation in the end is if Abu Mazen (Abbas) and (Palestinian Prime Minister) Salam Fayyad are capable of implementing anything in the West Bank," Barak was quoted as saying.

Barak, whose Labour party is a leading partner in Olmert's coalition, said he did not intend to break away from the government, but said that Olmert would appear "detached from reality" when the peace talks broke down.
That's the first rational thing I've heard from anyone in a position of responsibility in this government in months. Too bad Barak is now denying that he said it.
Barak's media adviser, Ronen Moshe, denied that the Labor chairman had made the statements.

"The defense minister remains committed to the diplomatic process, although his first commitment is to the security of Israel's citizens," Moshe said.
If Barak's first commitment is to "the security of Israel's citizens" most of those statements are sensible. (The ones that aren't are the far-too-short three-to-five year time frame and the idea of ceding Judea and Samaria to anyone so long as it entails needing a missile defense).

It's a sad reflection on the level of political discourse in this country when leaders have to live in FantasyLand to maintain their positions of power.

Update 2:52 PM

Arutz Sheva is now reporting some more details of what Barak said that were not reported by the mainstream media. I hope someone has this on tape:
"The Israelis have healthy intuition," Ehud Barak said, "and they can no longer be fed fantasies of an imminent agreement with the Palestinians... No agreement can be made with the current Palestinian leadership, and Olmert's meetings with [Fatah chief] Abu Mazen are just packaging and air, nothing more."

Barak was also reported to have said that Hamas is just a "bunch of murderers," and that there is no difference between Hamas and Fatah.

"We are interested in the peace process and the American summit [scheduled for November," Barak told his fellow party MKs, "but we are still realistic. Our primary responsibility is to the citizens of Israel." He also said that the checkpoints in Judea and Samaria would not be removed, despite Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's promises to Abu Mazen.
But of course, he'll deny he said those things....


At 8:09 PM, Blogger HEADJANITOR said...

DM Ehud Barak is a corrupt politician. His words, as reported in this blog--although they seem to suggest that Barak possesses a modicum of rationality and genuine concern for Israel's citizens--are deceptive and self-serving. His words furthermore show that Barak knows what Israelis think and want for themselves, that is: Israelis think that peace with Fatah/Hamas is a sick joke, and Israelis want real security.

This is nothing more nor less than Barak (not so subtly) grandstanding, and undermining the scant measure of supportive public opinion that yet remains for PM Olmert.

Barak wants the PM's job, let's face it. Even TRUTH, when spewing from the lips of traitors like Barak, is tainted with a foul odor.


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