Powered by WebAds

Sunday, January 06, 2008

'Fire and Brimstone' Winograd Report to be released January 30

The final Winograd Report is to be released on January 30 and Israel Television's nightly newscast has just quoted one of the commission's members anonymously as saying it will be "fire and brimstone."
The report will be presented to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak at 5 p.m.. There will also be a press conference in which the report will be made available to the public, a committee spokesman said.

The Winograd Committee has already made clear that the report will not contain recommendations or conclusions that could harm individuals holding positions of responsibility during or before the war, and that even the facts included in the report would not be harmful.

Committee members have declared that it is up to the public to draw conclusions from the report and to act accordingly.

Meanwhile, Olmert has already said he will not resign in the wake of the report. From a legal point of view, he will not have to if the committee does not expressly call for his resignation.
The government is in a mad rush to try to avoid being forced to new elections and instead is looking to replace Prime Minister Ehud K. Olmert with Foreign Minister Tzipi Feigele Livni so as to avoid going to new elections. Yisrael Beteinu leader Avigdor Lieberman started to shake his head out of the sand today by threatening to leave the government if the 'core issues' with the 'Palestinians' (borders, 'refugees' and Jerusalem) are discussed. And the government today bribed the Shas party to stay in the government. By a 15-6 vote, the government recreated the Religious Affairs ministry (the six votes against included three from Labor, two from Yisrael Beiteinu and Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann who is not technically a representative of any party), which was abolished during the Sharon government. And guess who will head the new ministry, now known as the 'Religious Services' Ministry: Yitzchak Cohen of Shas. But what's most amazing in this story is listening to the double talk coming from Ehud Olmert. He could compete with Bill Clinton anytime:
"There is no intention here to bring back the Religious Affairs Ministry," Olmert said. Senior officials in his office dismissed as "fabrications" reports that the move was taken to keep Shas in the coalition after the release of the Winograd report on the Second Lebanon War which is to be released on January 30.

Cabinet Secretary Ovad Yehezkel explained that when the Ministry of Religious Affairs was disbanded, its various responsibilities were parceled out to various ministries: responsibility for the chief rabbinate and for conversion courts went to the Prime Minister's Office; responsibility for rabbinical courts and for non-Jewish religious courts was transferred to the Justice Ministry; responsibility for yeshivot was transferred to the Education Ministry; responsibility for development of the country's holy sites went to the Tourism Ministry; and conversion classes were taken up by the Absorption Ministry.

Two areas, the religious councils and development of religious facilities, were placed under Cohen's purview. However, because Cohen "only" a "minister without portfolio," Yehezkel said he did not have the statutory power to sign off on numerous documents - including burial permits -- that then had to be signed by Olmert. On Sunday, Yehezkel said, the government transferred to Cohen the ability to sign off on these documents.

Olmert said that the move was purely of a" technical" nature to move final authority over these matters to Cohen.
Yeah, right. And the Pope is Protestant.


At 10:56 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl - the entire report is a whitewash designed to save the political echelon's hide. They point fingers at the army but not at the man responsible for his lack of attention to prosecuting the war - the Prime Minister. That's real Israeli chutzpah on display when Winograd does not hold Ehud Olmert accountable by name and deed - for losing a war.


Post a Comment

<< Home