To return to the points made last week regarding the campaign for large numbers of people to change their social networking profile pictures to Shalit’s;
The Rabbanim draw a strong distinction and bounds between pidyon Sh’vu’im — rescuing or redeeming captives and redeeming captives in a way which brings the entire nation into dire peril.
Further, to reiterate; once released, of course there are no restraints on these criminals’ freedoms (despite whatever linguistic nuances are employed in writing such release documents) and nothing incumbering them from resumption of their missions; wanton murder and maiming of Jews and kidnapping more Jewish soldiers for further return as the cycle grows ever more perilous.
It is unfathomable how this Chillul Hashem could be a source of national pride or be the mark of national strength. MB
Shortly before 4 p.m. on Sunday, the cabinet voted 22 to 3 to accept a deal far more modest than Nasrallah first demanded, which will see the two soldiers finally brought home.
The hearts and minds of Israelis were focused on the cabinet room, where the mood was solemn, and where everyone was given a chance to speak. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert wanted this to be a collective decision.
When it was his turn to talk, Public Security Minister Avi Dichter read a letter from Smadar Haran, who lost two children and a husband to Kuntar’s brutality in 1979. Haran did not advocate Kuntar’s release, far from it, but she wrote that she didn’t want her suffering to sway the ministers from doing what was best for the country. Later, she remarked that until Dichter informally solicited her opinion, no Israeli official had ever bothered to make inquiries.
At the outset of the cabinet meeting, Olmert announced that as far as Israel knows, Regev and Goldwasser are no longer alive. Though the news does not come as a bolt out of the blue, family members were nevertheless shattered by the manner in which it was delivered – via the media.
The deal requires Israel to free Kuntar and four other Lebanese; return the bodies of dozens of terrorist infiltrators; provide information to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on four missing Iranian diplomats; and, following the implementation of the agreement, to release an unspecified, but presumably modest, number of Palestinian prisoners.
THIS NEWSPAPER opposed the release of Kuntar for the remains of Regev and Goldwasser because of the heinous nature of the crime he committed and because it will likely strengthen Nasrallah in his efforts to show Hizbullah’s concerns transcend his own Shi’ite community (Kuntar is Druse and was a Palestine Liberation Front operative).
We also opposed a trade because Kuntar has become an important symbol throughout the Arab world; because of previous government commitments made to the family of IAF navigator Ron Arad (missing since his plane went down over Lebanon in 1986) not to release Kuntar without a quid pro quo; and because trading Kuntar for the remains of two dead soldiers will likely complicate the price we will have to pay for the return of Gilad Schalit from the Gaza Strip. This latter warning was echoed by the Mossad and Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), which opposed the deal.
Not a Personal Affair, by Caroline Glick (Jerusalem Post)
Shas voted for body-terrorist swap on basis of false premise that it was required in order to resolve the status of the wife of Ehud Goldwasser.
This development raises serious questions regarding Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s decision making process…
“If we free our captives in swaps, we have no right to risk troops in future rescue ops.”
Leftist Pressure Peaks as Govvernment Decisions on Deals Near, by Gil Ronen (Israel National News)
Government Held Hostage Over Hostage Negotiating, by Calev Ben-David (Jerusalem Post)