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Israel and Ireland - Fighting corruption

category national | public consultation / irish social forum | feature author Thursday July 31, 2008 22:02author by Anthony Sheridan - http://www.publicinquiry.eu/ Report this post to the editors

When corruption is uncovered in functional jurisdictions a long established and well tested series of events come into play. Police investigate and if sufficient evidence is collected suspects are brought before the courts to account for themselves. If found guilty, they are given appropriate punishment. In dysfunctional jurisdictions such procedures are often ignored in the interests of protecting the powerful.


"I am proud to be a citizen of a country where the prime minister can be investigated like a regular citizen. It is the duty of the police to investigate, and the duty of the prosecution to instruct the police. The prime minister is not above the law."

These are the words of Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, on announcing his resignation over allegations of corruption.

Our former Prime Minister, Bertie Ahern would not agree. Ahern’s opinion of those who are investigating him, the Mahon Tribunal, is stark – They’re low life.

There are other comparisons that can be made between Olmert and Ahern, comparisons that confirm Ireland as a dysfunctional jurisdiction when it comes to effectively dealing with corruption.

The Israeli police are investigating allegations that Olmert took bribes from a businessman friend. Olmert says the money was for election expenses. The businessman said some of the money was a ‘loan’ that was never repaid.

The Irish police are not investigating Ahern for similar alleged offences. He is being investigated by a tribunal that has little power. No matter what conclusions the Mahon Tribunal reach Ahern will never be investigated by the police.

The Israeli police are investigating allegations that Olmert was involved in fraudulent expenses claims.

The Irish police are not and never have investigated any Irish politician for similar offences despite the fact that abuse of expenses is widespread.

Israeli police are investigating allegations that Olmert appointed political associates to government bodies.

The Irish police are not and never have investigated such activities in Ireland despite, or because of, the fact that such behaviour is an intrinsic part of Irish political culture. When Ahern casually admitted on live television that he appointed people to government bodies because they were his friends nobody batted an eyelid, nobody took any action whatsoever.

Israeli police are investigating allegations that Olmert used his influence to favour a friend in a business transaction.

The Irish police do not investigate such activities despite the fact that such behaviour is common in Ireland.

The Israeli police are carrying out a criminal investigation into allegations that Olmert paid $325,000 below market value for a Jerusalem property.

The Irish police are not investigating property/planning corruption. In Ireland, such matters are investigated by never ending tribunals that have no power of prosecution. The Irish police can, after years of investigation by a tribunal, initiate an investigation into such activities but are strictly forbidden from using any of the evidence collected by the tribunal. They must start off their investigation from a blank slate. This has never happened.

Mr. Olmert is justified in saying that he is proud to be a citizen of a state where the Prime Minister can be investigated like a regular citizen. By the same token I am ashamed to be a citizen of a state where such an event is an impossibility.

Related Link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7035526.stm

Parliamentary democracy and accountability?
Parliamentary democracy and accountability?

author by T E Spublication date Fri Aug 01, 2008 01:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

There are historical parallels between what my friends who pray five times a day call the "zionist entity" , and what my friends who never pray at all call "the 26 county state".

Both are products of muddled and schizoid British policy and violent guerrilla wars. Israel was founded in 1948, while the Republic of Ireland came into being in 1949. Both states have never clearly resolved to their own satisfaction what their borders are, and both of course lay claim to a widespread diaspora and a "special relationship" with the United States.

One could keep coming up with these, of course, but they are parallels, not similarities, and it's probably more important to focus on the differences between the two countries in the light of the tellingly different resignations of their premiers.

Israel is sometimes referred to "an army with a country rather than a country with an army", and perhaps that is the root of the divergent paths the post colonial journeys of the two countries have taken.

Israel has always been something different than just an economy, a society, a culture and a people etc, all the things that other democracies tell themselves they are, fall short of the Israeli narrative.

Israel is a project to install a Eurocentric Jewish apartheid military state in the middle of a huge population of Arab Muslims. Ireland, by contrast, is much more like one of the post colonial Arab states that surround Israel- a country of people who were unused to running to their own affairs, a state that arrived almost by historical accident, whereby suddenly a people that had been imperial subjects found themselves without masters, and promptly reverted to comforting theocracy on the surface while secretly filling their pockets with whatever they could get for the benefit of local tribe and family.

Ahern's money grabbing and cronyism would be normal in any of Israel's neighbours, and it's only the unusual circumstances of the zionist and racist project that is Israel which makes "normal" post colonial behaviour difficult. Israel is corrupt in different ways of course, as the grabbing of Palestinian homes and land shows.

Perhaps it's true to say that a country founded on such a huge and continuing robbery has no room for little robbers.

olmert_ahern.jpg

author by Shazpublication date Fri Aug 01, 2008 16:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Actually, just finished reading Richard Crowley's book No Man's Land. For someone who feels under-educated on the whole Middle East question, I thought it was a brilliant read. Thorough and engaging. Definitely recommend it to anyone interested in the Israel - Palestine conflict.

author by Wonderingpublication date Sat Aug 02, 2008 11:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'm puzzled about the "Global Security Fund" and the way it appears to be a taboo subject which the vast majority of people seem to be terrified of discussing -- and which is all the more reason why it absolutely should and must be discussed perhaps?

Mr Ashley Mote MEP (addressing the European Parliament):

"Mr President, I wish to draw your attention to the Global Security Fund, set up in the early 1990s under the auspices of  Jacob Rothschild. This is a Brussels-based fund and it is no ordinary fund: it does not trade, it is not listed and it has a totally different purpose. It is being used for geopolitical engineering purposes, apparently under the guidance of the intelligence services."

Some additional information on this subject can be found via http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Global+Security+Fu...earch

Nobody at all -- police or anyone else -- seems to be investigating this particular "slush fund" (conservatively estimated to be worth $65 Trillion some claim), and I can't help wondering why?

author by Alec Johnsonpublication date Sat Aug 02, 2008 20:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors



Feel free to compare corrupt politicans to other rotten politicians, greed knows no fronteirs but please dont compare this country and its police force to Israel's genocidal security forces. When Irish police or army start going into third world countries and instigating apartheid systems of control and imprisonment on ordinary decent people, then I will be looking for resignation across the board.
Who gives a toss about Olmert's grubby deals when Israel is stamping its feet all over Palestinian rights and threatening World war on a daily basis.

Get a bit of perpective , please.

author by Anthony Sheridan - http://www.publicinquiry.eu/publication date Tue Aug 05, 2008 16:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The article is not about the Israeli security forces, Palestinian rights or the possibility of world war Alec; it’s about corruption in Ireland.

The comparison between Ireland and Israel is simply to demonstrate the fact that Irish authorities do not recognise or act against white collar crime.

It happened to be Israel because of recent police investigations there but it could have been any country where law enforcement is taken seriously.

Regards

 
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