Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Mysterious Resignation

Shaul Mofaz, Israel's current Minister of Transportation, former Defense Minister as well as retired Chief of Staff announced his "temporary withdrawal" from politics today. He made this resignation in the wake of his very narrow defeat to Tsipi Livni in the Kadima primaries, which Mofaz, contrary to the exit polls released yesterday. lost by less than 500 votes; pollsters had predicted a 10% margin of victory for Livni. Mofaz's sudden withdrawal makes little sense. He could have easily challenged it, or at least brought pressure to bear on Livni to demand a cabinet post. It is all quite fishy, to say the least. 

There were two sets of rumors circulating before and after the vote yesterday. As with every election and party primary, there were allegations about vote-buying and electoral irregularities in the Arab sectors, where particular communities or towns often vote en bloc for one candidate (see for example this story on Ghajar). Perhaps more importantly, the state comptroller is apparently investigating fiscal improprieties in the Mofaz campaign (Ha'aretz Hebrew). Apparently, the Mofaz campaign accepted donations in excess of the allowed sum per donor, which is set at 40,000 NIS. According to Ha'aretz, Mofaz received the following donations from four American businessmen:

$99,970 from Allan Meder (?)
$100,000 from Lucian Salls (sp?)
$50,000 from  Yakov Menahem
$18,000 from David Amrani

I couldn't find anything on these individuals - I'm sure that more will emerge shortly.

1 comment:

rebecca said...

Infant Joy


'I have no name;

I am but two days old.

What shall I call thee?

'I happy am,

Joy is my name.

Sweet joy befall thee!


Pretty Joy!

Sweet Joy, but two days old.
Sweet Joy I call thee:

Thou dost smile,

I sing the while,

Sweet joy befall thee!

-----by maple story accounts