Summary of Editorials from the Izraeli Hebrew Press

Four papers discuss various issues regarding the Arab Spring in light of the capture and execution of Libyan dictator Muammar Gadhafi:
Yediot Aharonot notes the respective fates of the leaders and former leaders of Tunisia, Libya, Egypt and Yemen and says that, „Their common denominator: They were blind to reality. They were dictators who were unable to identify the moment of truth, their undreamed of end of the road.” The editor discusses Syria and contends that „In western eyes, Bashar Assad ended his career four or five months ago, and is closed up inside the palace, on borrowed time.” The paper asserts that in Syria, „the name of the game is survival by force of the gang that is holding the President – the heads of the Alawite community, army and security service commanders, and the merchants who got rich from the link between money and the regime and made millions from smuggling and payoffs. All of these know that if Assad is forced to pack, they will face the unknown.” The author believes that „even Bashar knows that it is only a question of time,” and adds that „the Syrian people don’t believe a word he says.”
Ma’ariv cites David Gerbi, a European representative of the World Organization of Libyan Jews, who said, „I was not surprised by the way in which Gadhafi was eliminated because the Libyans do not recognize any other pattern of behavior. It was a kind of national catharsis and a way to vent the deep rage that the Libyan people had accumulated against the dictator. What’s certain is that the execution severely harms the image of the rebels, who wanted to show the world a different picture of Libya.”

Haaretz comments: „A lynching cannot possibly be supported by advocates of human rights and democracy, even if its target is the worst of tyrants. Justice would have been served had Muammar Gadhafi been brought to the International Criminal Court in The Hague. At the same time, the removal of one of the most brutal tyrants in the region can been seen as a positive development. The fall of another domino in the Middle East is an encouraging development for all those who aspire to democracy and the rule of law throughout the world. In the dilemma between the support for stable tyrannies and supporting the revolutionaries and their uncertain future, the choice is clear. Israel must do everything possible to prove to the Arab peoples that are being freed that democracies are meant for each other; and that Israel is part of the family of freedom, democracy and peace, that same family that is seeking to adopt them.”
Yisrael Hayom says that, „Gadhafi was far from an innocent lamb,” but declares, „The pictures of the lynching last Thursday were intolerable, as are those of Libyan throngs making the pilgrimage to the market where the dictator’s corpse, along with that of one of his sons, is being held in a meat locker… don’t exactly point to a revitalized, forward-looking Libya.” The author avers that „the pictures from Libya are inciting the street” in Syria and adds that Bashar Assad „is living on borrowed time.” The paper cautions that an Islamist victory in today’s elections in Tunisia would not bode well for the Arab Spring and would portend „the unleashing of darker forces.”
The Jerusalem Post argues that in today’s world the deportation of terrorists is ineffective: „The rationale for taking heart from the deportations is that we’re better off with the most heinous terror masterminds removed as far as possible from their home base and crime scenes. Had these same hardened linchpins been welcomed as heroes right under our noses, things would have undeniably been significantly worse.  Yet in our day and age it is disingenuous to suggest that a credible cut-off from the terror infrastructure can be a realistic expectation. If anything, our reality repeatedly proves the precise reverse. Hamas is essentially run via remote control by a host of chieftains who were either expelled from previous bases or who had chosen to stay far from Israel’s grasp in such hypothetically safer locations as Syria. Distance clearly is no antidote to malice. Therefore, complacency is no option for us. We need to stay vigilant and very worried.”