Pines-Paz supports committee of inquiry

Minister expects commission will find deficiencies in senior management.

Culture and Sport Minister Ophir Paz-Pines (Labor) reaffirmed in an interview with Army Radio on Friday his support for the establishment of an investigation committee, saying that the committee could reveal details about the management in the upper echelons during the war. "If I were the one establishing the committee, I would give it a broad mandate - that's what a government committee is intended for. There need to limit the mandate," said Paz-Pines, who is a member of the security cabinet. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is expected to decide by the end of the week which type of committee will be appointed to investigate the war in Lebanon - a state commission of inquiry headed by a judge, or a government investigative committee. The prime minister's office reported Friday morning that Olmert preferred the latter, as he could decide on its makeup and the character of the investigation. However, public pressure has been mounting for a state commission of inquiry. Paz-Pines estimated that the investigation committee would find deficiencies in the operation of the government and the military. "Most of the things that were done and said - for instance, in the meetings I participated in as part of the [security] cabinet - most of the things were as yet unknown," he said. Opposition leader Binyamin Netanyahu said earlier this week that the government needed to decide on a state commission of inquiry, and that the commission would have to investigate the senior management during the war.