Thursday, March 30, 2006

The biggest surprise of the Israeli elections was not the victory of Kadima or the defeat of Likud, but the 7 seats that the “Gil Pensioners of Israel to the Knesseth” Party snagged.
This party is headed by Rafi Eitan, who is quite a character.

You see, Eytan used to be a former senior Mossad official and head of the branch dealing with technology and science during the Pollard affair.
He recruited Pollard, a navy intelligence analyst. He used Pollard as a spy against the US. Pollard and his than wife Ann were convicted for supplying Israel (via Eitan) with top secret information.
During the Pollards prosecution, Rafi Eitan and Aviem Sela of the IAF were also mentioned, but never indicted.

Sela, who was in the US at the time, fled to Israel and was never prosecuted.
Both of them avoid visiting the US, since they could face question about their role in the Pollard affair.

Eitan took full responsibility for recruiting Pollard:
"It was my decision and mine only. I took complete, absolute responsibility. I decided to take the risk, which was clear to me, although I didn't predict the affair would develop to such an extent. There's risk when using any agent."

He disputed the claim that Pollard's information led to revealing the identity of American spies operating in the Soviet Union.

Now that Eitan's party scored such a election victorty, two questions need to be ansered:
  • Will Eitan join the coalition and be appointed minister?
  • How will the US react to the new publicity linked to the (still) sensitive case of Pollard?

One thing is for sure: politics in Israel - never boring!

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