Justice Minister Tzipi Livni wears two additional hats which, in the context of this story give her the ability to kill a Jewish Home initiative that on its face appears rather reasonable. MK Orit Struk has offered the bill for deliberation at the ministerial committee on legislation. The gist of it is:
No prisoner with blood on his hands may be released as part of the political process.
On its face, the new law would free future prime ministers from the insanity of the Gilad Shalit campaign, when the government capitulated to the mob and let go of prisoners who were responsible, altogether, for the murder of some 600 Jewish victims, men, women and children – in return for an Israeli hostage.
As has become evident, the Israeli capitulation, spearheaded by Netanyahu, has encouraged the other side to invest millions in new attempts to kidnap Israelis – including, most notably, digging up “terror tunnels” equipped with tracks for the quick removal of abducted Israelis back into Gaza.
Having a law on the books that prohibits this shameful negotiations with terrorists, and nipping in the bud any future attempt to release deadly prisoners back into the wild, makes perfect sense to anyone who gives half a hoot about the victims of Arab murderers. But the new bill will not even be discussed in today’s meeting of the ministerial legislation committee, much less be offered to the Knesset at large.
Remember the two additional hats worn by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni? well, one of them is of chief Israeli negotiator to the peace talks with the Palestinian Authority. As part of these talks, Israel has already let go of several hundred Palestinian prisoners, some of whom were nearing their release date anyway, others who have been diagnosed with a variety of illnesses.
Now, as part of the Tzipi Livni-Saeb Erakat negotiations, Israel is expected to release 32 veteran prisoners this coming Tuesday. The names of the 32 long-term prisoners will be announced today, Sunday, so that anyone opposing their release will have about 24 hours to research how much Jewish blood is dripping from their hands, demonstrate late Monday night in front of this or that official government building and the killers go free. Nice, clean, efficient.
So Tzipi Livni needs a law that says she can’t do that like she needs a hole in the head. But you can’t say “hole in the head” in Israel, because it sounds like a call to murder – Tzipi’s number 2 in the Movement (HaTnuah in Hebrew), Minister Amir (looking through the capped binoculars) Peretz, has been suggesting that there’s a quick and slippery slope between some 17-year-old in some moshav up north spitting on MK Elazar Stern and the wholesale assassinations of Tzipi Livni, Stern, and, possibly, himself, Peretz.
If you don’t know it already, what Peretz is doing is milking the Yitzhak Rabin hysteria cow for all the sour milk it would give. And around this time of the year, when Israel’s left commemorates the Rabin assassination on the Hebrew date, then on the general calendar date, and then on all the dates in between, the art of Rabinizing absolutely every expression that challenges the left is blossoming. The logic goes: you object to the peace process – Yigal Amir objected to the peace process – Yigal Amir assassinated Yitzhak Rabin – you are an assassin.
Of course, Amir Peretz is more likely to be the victim of mischief, because of the capped binoculars…
On with our Israeli Political Science 101 lecture this morning: so you’ve seen already how Tzipi Livni has a clear conflict of interest when it comes to the new legislation regarding the release of killer Arabs. What you didn’t know, possibly, was that her third hat is that of Chair of the Ministerial Committee on Legislation. Meaning that she decides which legislation should be entertained by the committee and hence by the Knesset, and which legislation should never see the light of day.
Now, you would think that in such a situation, when the chair of the legislative committee is so close to the events in discussion, she would recuse herself and ask another committee member to chair the discussion. The law could still be killed, but at least it would be given the fair-minded treatment it deserve.
I’m kidding, of course. What tzipi Livni did was declare that she will never let that law through, and that it is a blatant attempt on the part of Jewish Home to subvert the peace process – her other hat.
Incidentally, as Justice Minister, Tzipi also decides which prisoners get released. So, the process of checks and balances in this case goes: Tzipi the peace negotiator tells Tzipi the legislative committee chair that she hates the new bill, and so Tzipi kills the bill and tells Tzipi the justice minister to start lining up the next batch of killers to be loosed.
But wait, there’s more. The Israeli government, based on its understanding of how the peace process was happening, was led to understand that the good will gestures along the negotiations path would be mutual. For instance, Israel understood that while it was letting go of some of the most despicable terrorists on the planet, in return the PA would remove its objection to a few hundred housing units in the disputed territories.
Turns out Israel was wrong. In return for the releases we get nothing. Or, as PA Minister Hanan Ashrawi (the Palestinian Golda) put it, the most we’re getting from this is that the PA will not apply for now to be accepted as a member state in various international organizations. They’ll do it eventually, but as long as Israel keeps setting free the killers of its citizens, they PA will show restraint.
Yasser Abed Rabbo, secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), denied any understandings regarding a quid pro quo on killer-go-home and Jew-build-home.
“Establishing a link between settlements and the freeing of prisoners goes against all the undertakings made,” Abed Rabbo told AFP. It would “create a very dangerous situation that we would not accept at any cost.”
So, as things stand today, Tzipi Livni is acting more as an agent of the PA than as a defender of the right of Israeli citizens—who didn’t vote for her, but are entitled to be protected by her. She squashes legislation that would empower our government to stand up to hostage-taking terrorists, she misrepresents the concrete understandings regarding continued Jewish life east of the 1949 armistice line, aka the green line, and she accuses the folks who object to all this of plotting to assassinate her.
Under these circumstances, I see only one way out of this mess. Someone should start a rumor going that Tzipi Livni is saying that Sara Netanyahu is fat. Once those rumors reach their natural target – that’ll be the end of Tzipi Livin’s career.
Otherwise, folks, we’re up against the most ambitious, self-righteous, venomous, spiteful operation against Jewish life in Judea and Samaria, and she’s wearing three hats.
About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.
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