Yediot Ahronot fears that the recommendations will be ignored unless, „a good and important group of VIPs in the State of Israel,” pushes for them vigorously and vocally. The editors assert that, „Maybe not all of the recommendations are good. Maybe not all of them could be implemented. But there is practically no doubt that adopting them would, at least partially, stop the political corruption, distance trouble-makers from the party primaries and lead to better representation for the little guy.”
Yediot Ahronot, in its second editorial, says that after President Katsav is indicted, the media will have to do a thorough soul-searching for having, „crucified him, way before the severity of the accusations became clear; they did not give him a chance.” The editors contend that the foregoing is valid even if he is convicted and imprisoned.
Hatzofeh complains that, „Approximately half of the pupils who are eligible – by law – for a daily hot meal are not receiving it due to the financial distress of the local councils.”
Yediot Ahronot, in its third editorial, suggests that the New Year celebrations in Sydney were so carefree because the Australians don’t have enemies like ours.
Yediot Ahronot, in its fourth editorial, eulogizes Israeli soccer legend Ya’akov Khodorov, who passed away Sunday morning at age 79.
HEADLINES FROM THE HEBREW PRESS
1. ISRAEL WEIGHS REPLACING ARROW MISSILE.
Discussions held with USA on purchasing the American THAAD instead of developing the Arrow.
2. OLMERT REJECTS CONDITIONS FOR PRISONER RELEASE; HANIYEH: ISRAEL GUILTY OF FOOT-DRAGGING.
No progress in formulating a deal for the return of abducted soldier Gilad Shalit in exchange for the release of Palestinian prisoners – so said Israeli sources yesterday. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert convened a discussion concerning a deal, in which it was said that Israel has no intention of releasing the number of prisoners that Hamas representatives are demanding. Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh accused Israel of foot-dragging. In the meantime renewed shooting erupted in the Gaza Strip between Palestinian factions yesterday. Twelve Hamas members and four Fatah members kidnapped in northern Gaza after more than a week of quiet.
3. Halutz presents findings.
SIX MONTHS AFTER INS SPEAR ATTACK: REPRIMANDS FOR FIVE NAVAL OFFICERS.
1. Israel – lack of progress in negotiation to release Shalit due to exaggerated Hamas demands.
OLMERT: WE WILL NOT RELEASE A THOUSAND PRISONERS.
In Israel it was decided not to release Palestinian prisoners in numbers reported in the Arab press. Noam Shalit to Assad: „If you are serious about your peace proposals, you have an opportunity to phone your friend Khaled Mashal and ask him to end the ordeal.
2. SHOMRON: HALUTZ WILL LEAD IDF REHABILITATION.
Report: Source of failures is a result of ten years of neglect. But still, a mistake was made by preferring air power over ground forces and in calling up reserves too late. Navy Command guilty of the INS Spear attack – five naval officers were reprimanded. C-O-S commenced presentation of investigative committees’ findings to senior command.
3. KATSAV: DO NOT PASS SENTENCE ON ME BEFORE COURT DECISION.
4. [KNESSET] EDUCATION COMMITTEE VOTES AGAINST DEMARCATING THE „GREEN LINE” IN TEXTBOOKS.
5. COALITION TO ANCHOR IN LAW PROTECTION OF GAZA PERIPHERY.
1. Special: Hizbullah terrorists write home from Israeli jail.
LEBANESE PRISONERS’ LETTER.
Hizbullah terrorists imprisoned in Israel call to the Lebanese nation: „Do something so that our release will be quick.” From jail they follow the situation of Israeli abductees Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev. „We understand that will we be released only if the IDF soldiers are released.”
2. OLMERT TO HALUTZ: DON’T RESIGN.
Prime Minister supports leaving Halutz in position, at least until publication of Winograd Committee findings.
1. Senior [officers] who testified before Second Lebanese War investigation team:
WINIGRAD COMMITTEE HAS FINGERED HALUTZ.
According to witnesses: „Heads will roll when the findings are published.” C-O-S presented war’s lessons before IDF commanders. Investigation of INS Spear failure: Only officers responsible reprimanded.
2. EXPLOSIVES LABORATORY.
Expose: In the depths of the earth in the Eilat mountains, Israel is running a UN laboratory. Its job: Identifying explosions originating in Iranian nuclear experiments. Today in the Negev: Huge explosion to set equipment.