In an interview given by Israel’s former prime minister and renowned international traveller Ehud Olmert to C.N.N.’s interviewer Christiane Amanpour, Olmert claimed that millions of dollars were transferred from the US by far right activists in order to oust him from the role of prime minister and to prevent him from reaching a peace deal with the Palestinians that was to include the division of Jerusalem. It is interesting to hear the man that according to the testimony of a US citizen in an Israeli court received envelopes packed with thousands of dollars, speaking about moneys which were transferred from the US to Israel.
Ehud Olmert forgot of course to tell the esteemed interviewer that the reason he is no longer prime minister of Israel is that his coalition partners made it clear to him that they will not be able to sit any more in a government he was heading in view of the stream of serious allegations of criminal corruption that were raised against him and that which for some of them, he is now standing trial. The end of his premiership had nothing to do with any political matters.
Regarding the peace agreements with the Palestinians he claims he would have achieved if it was not for his opponents using those millions of dollars to push him out of office – what does the man think, that we are all idiots? With whom exactly would he have made peace and to whom exactly would he have given half of the city of Jerusalem? To Abu Mazen? To the Hamas that has etched on its flag the destruction of the state of Israel? Or directly to Iran which stands behind Hamas’ efforts to achieve this? And would this bring to an end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Does he think that the people of Israel have forgotten so quickly his unilateral plan to withdraw from the West Bank, which was to be the next stage after the abandonment of the Gaza Strip and the Philadelphi route, and which was shelved following the stream of rockets from ‘liberated’ Gaza, the kidnaping of Gilad Shalit and the second Lebanon war, after he and his partners realised they will not be able to sell this plan to the Israeli people in the atmosphere created by these events?
From the expression on the face of Christiane Amanpour in the C.N.N. video clip, it is difficult to tell if she is swallowing with deep seriousness the ‘Lokshen ‘ which Olmert is feeding her with, or if she is only pretending to listen intently whilst trying hard not to burst out laughing. What is certain is that this was a shameful, even disgraceful, occasion for the state of Israel and for Olmert himself. Let us hope that if and when he receives the justice he deserves, he will be prevented from travelling the world and giving such interviews for many years to come.