Carmel Fire 311 (R).
(photo credit: REUTERS/Nir Elias)
State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss delayed the release of a lengthy report he
is writing about last December’s Carmel Fire because “its findings are becoming
increasingly harsh,” he told Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin on
Lindenstrauss explained that the report on the responses to the
fire is shaping up to be one of the longest, most detailed and most complex that
he can remember. While he had earlier promised to release it by the end of the
year, it is now only expected in late January at the earliest.
State Comptroller: Carmel Fire report 'very severe'
State bows its head to honor Carmel fire victims
Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz, Interior Minister
Eli Yishai and Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich are all expected to
be targeted by the report. They are all being given time to respond to the
report and explain their side.
Rivlin said while there are fierce
arguments about the responsibility for the fire’s casualties, all sides agree
that they must wait for the Comptroller’s report, which will shed light on the
facts and the circumstances of the tragedy.
“The state comptroller has
become the public’s eye, supervising all that is being done and pointing out
what must be fixed,” Rivlin said, at a meeting in which Lindenstrauss presented
his report on local authorities.
The Likud fought back on Tuesday against
Kadima’s charges that Netanyahu had utilized a memorial ceremony for fire
for political gain. Kadima had condemned what it called biased narration
at the ceremony in which Netanyahu was introduced with
“Until I heard the attacks on the prime minister by
opposition MKs, who are doing their job, I didn’t think there was anything wrong
with the narration,” Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan said. “When
you hear it in context [emcee] Dan Kaner just told the truth about what the
prime minister did.”
The head of the Likud’s response team, MK Ophir
Akunis, called the press coverage of the controversy “shallow, pathetic, and not
He predicted that the criticism of Netanyahu would boomerang in
But opposition MKs became increasingly creative in their
criticism of Netanyahu on Tuesday. Labor faction chairman Eitan Cabel suggested
some additions to the “great superlatives and amazing words of praise” said
about Netanyahu at the memorial ceremony, explaining that when he watched it, he
understood that all of his criticism of the prime minister was “foolishness and
“I’d like to add to what was said yesterday and say that you
are great, you are a hero, you are amazing, muscular, strong and
Your hair is flowing and black, you are a better footballer
than [Lionel] Messi, you jump higher than Michael Jordan, you are the national
visionary, a light unto the nations,” Cabel said sarcastically, during the time
allotted for minute-long speeches in the Knesset plenum.
The Labor MK
then suggested that the first of April be a national day of praise for