(photo credit: REUTERS)
The only legacy that former prime minister Ehud Olmert deserves is the fact that Israel is strong enough morally to throw him where he belongs, albeit with a lenient sentence – with the rest of the nation’s criminals (“Olmert enters jail, becomes first PM to go behind bars,” February 16).
It is amazing, though, that in the name of the peace process and the twostate solution, Jeff Barak would like to remember him for all the good he did (“Olmert’s legacy,” Reality Check, February 15).
One has to wonder what Barak’s thoughts would be if the person being thrown in jail was the original Olmert, the one who was more hawkish in his early days. By the end of his term as prime minister, he was willing to give the Palestinians everything they wished for, and even more. This is what is so disappointing to Barak.
It doesn’t matter that Olmert was a criminal when he was merely a cabinet minister and mayor.
Can we ever know his true motivation for doing the Left’s bidding? Could it have been that he wanted to win the favor of the media so that they would protect him when news got out about his criminal activities? How ironic it is that now that none other than a leftwing journalist is still trying to prop him up for all the good things he did, regardless of his true motivations.
JONATHAN SURASKY Ra’anana Jeff Barak’s paean to convict Ehud Olmert as he headed for the hoosegow was to be expected from one who reflexively lauds anyone he perceives as the un-Bibi. The rest of us are sickened by the spectacle of this defiant and unapologetic criminal about to serve a minuscule sentence for major crimes that are surely but the tip of his felonious iceberg.
Olmert spent most of his career as a civil servant collecting a government paycheck, yet his bottomless pit of cash enabled him to waste the time of the courts and the prosecution, and the money of Israel’s taxpayers, as his majorleague battalion of legal mercenaries chipped, jawed, clawed and argued, thereby buying time both up front and in limiting the amount of time this meistercrook will be serving.
If our legal system had any initiative, it would track the sources of all those millions in fees that Olmert’s legal mafia was paid. For sure, Holyland is just a tiny part.
YOHANAN AV-YAIR Jerusalem There’s an old joke about any group you don’t particularly care for, asking what it’s called when you’ve thrown a thousand of them into a locked room and thrown away the key. Answer: A good start.
We’ve locked up people who have served as Knesset members, cabinet ministers and even president.
Now there’s a former prime minister behind bars. That’s a whole lotta people who were in positions of responsibility and, more important, trust.
How long will we keep on saying it’s a good start? ARI BEN-SENDER Jerusalem I am proud of Israel. I have been proud to call myself an Israeli since I made aliya at the wonderful age of 22. But now I am ashamed – everyone knows that the road to perdition is paved with good intentions, but not here, not in Israel, not with Israelis.
I am sick to my stomach when I admit that I find some consolation in the thought that former prime minister Ehud Olmert will be standing with his back to the wall in the shower every day for the next year and a half.
Pay attention, Israel. This is probably one of our last wake-up-calls.
HOWARD BURNS Haifa