Former Shin Bet Chief on Jewish Terror, Deteriorating Relations with Israeli Palestinians, Delusions Regarding Israeli Attack on Iran ~ by @Richards1052

Tikun Olam | Richard Silverstein | April 28, 2012

I’ve noticed a rather remarkable phenomenon among Israeli intelligence chiefs and prime ministers. While in office they speak loads of rubbish. But once they leave, a cloud lifts and their minds clear and they become lucid, incisive, even brilliant. But of course, the problem is that they could’ve only benefited the nation from those brilliant insights they discovered after leaving office, while they were in office. It does themselves or Israel little good, for example, for Ehud Olmert to discover all the errors Israel made in not resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict after he left office.

What is it about Israeli leaders that causes them to be idiots while in office but savants after? Part of the issue is political: no Israeli leader can speak truthfully about national security issues unless they wish to destroy their political careers. Once they step down though, they have the luxury of hindsight and can speak candidly about everything they could and should’ve done while in power.

When I hear the compelling statements by Yuval Diskin (Hebrew) in these videos (watch all of them if possible and you know Hebrew: here) of a talk he gave in Kfar Saba this week, I want to grab him by the lapels and say: “why didn’t you do or say any of these things when you had a chance to make a difference?”. Of course, this is putting it wrong, because any political player who would say these things would not remain so for long.

Israel’s national security policy is made in a very small circle and hews to a very limited set of ideas. That is why Israel faces such a disastrous set of policy options in so many areas. If policymakers could entertain a wider set of political ideas the country would be far better off.

For example, in one of the videos Diskin notes the extraordinary decline in relations between Israeli Jews and the Palestinian minority. He deplores the benign neglect to which almost all Israeli prime ministers have subjected the Palestinian Israelis (with the exception of Yitzhak Rabin) since the creation of the State. He almost sounds like a flaming liberal. Read the whole story and watch the video at Tikun Olam

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