Sunday, October 17, 2010

Squeamish Sunday News Round up from Israel

Not for the faint of heart.

1. From INN and NRG: A three-justice IDF military court found Wisam Ali Mahmad Raadi innocent of manslaughter charges in the infamous lynch-murder of two IDF soldiers 10 years ago.

Judge Menachem Lieberman, who headed the three-member panel, accepted Raadi's explanation that he had beaten the body of one of the victims only after he was already dead. So reports the Jerusalem weekly Kol HaZman.

The soldiers were beaten, stabbed, had their eyes gouged out, and were disemboweled. One of the soldier's bodies was set on fire; one was thrown out the window and stamped and beaten by the fired-up mob. The crazed Arab citizens then dragged the two mutilated corpses to the city center and held a victory celebration.

Close to 20 Arabs have been arrested and convicted for their role in the lynching a decade ago. Raadi, however, who was represented in court by radical left-wing Israeli lawyer Leah Zemel, got off easy. A policeman in Ramallah at the time who was arrested several years ago, he was found guilty only of "harming regional security."

"It is clear that the accused did not have intention to cause death," Judge Lieberman wrote in his ruling, "but on the other hand, it is also clear that he meant to beat and strike the soldier. This was therefore a purposeful act of striking the body in order to get out his frustration and anger. But I was not persuaded that he intended to harm a living person."

2. Rigged? Once in 10,000 years event: Combination of six numbers repeats itself twice, less than a month apart; 95 gamblers bet on unlikely event and win.

Statisticians said the probability was abysmal, conspiracy theorists said the game was rigged, but some lucky gamblers believed this could happen: In an odds-defying incident, Saturday night's state lottery numbers were an almost identical repeat of the lottery numbers from September 21. Ninety-five people picked the lucky combination and won.

The numbers that rolled out during a live studio broadcast this past Saturday, in lottery number 2194 of Miphal HaPayis, Israel's state lottery, were 36, 33, 32, 26, 14, 13, and an additional 'strong' number 2. Moments after the celebration in the studio, curious web surfers were amazed to notice that these same numbers happened to roll out less than a month ago; on September 21, in lottery number 2187, the winning numbers were 13, 14, 26, 32, 33, 36, and a 'strong' number of 1. The order in which the numbers were picked was reversed. (ynetnews)

3. Definitely Rigged.
Fifteen years after Yigal Amir shot and killed Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, prominent religious figures have begun an ill-timed campaign to retroactively acquit Amir's girlfriend, who was charged with failing to report his intent to commit murder.

In a letter to Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, several rabbis and members of the Knesset quoted former Shin Bet officials Carmi Gillon and Ami Ayalon who expressed their belief that Har-Shefi, was not, in fact, aware of Amir's intention to kill Rabin.

Among those who signed the letter are Knesset Members Otniel Schneller of Kadima and Uri Ariel of the National Union, as well as Rabbis Yuval Sherlo and Yaakov Meidan.

"I am shocked by the idea," responded the slain prime minister's daughter, Dalia Rabin, who added that her reaction was not personal and she trusted the legal authorities to make the right decision.
4. Absolut Rigging. The foreign worker at the center of a recently dropped investigation against Defense Minister Ehud Barak was located over the weekend and gave an interview to Israel Radio that aired Sunday morning. The worker said in the interview that Barak's body guards and his wife had her phone number.

The investigation into Barak's hiring of an illegal foreign worker was closed after investigators from the Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry, as well as from the Shin Bet, were unable to locate the Filipino woman. It was alleged that the woman illegally worked as a cleaner in the Barak family's Tel Aviv home.

The investigation was called off when investigators could not turn up enough evidence to file an indictment.

In the Israel Radio interview, the worker said that she would typically enter the defense minister's home without undergoing any security checks. Speaking on Barak, the woman called him a "good man," and said that he treated her decently. The Filipino woman expressed similar sentiments about Barak's wife, Nili, saying, "Nili gave me presents."

According to the woman, she used several different names while in Israel. Additionally, she said that Barak's security guards as well as his wife had her phone number, implying that a regular relationship had developed with the employee.

It was discovered in the investigation that the woman began working at the Barak home without a proper visa in December of last year and remained in the family's employment for the following months, cleaning their home twice a week. (JPost)

Hopefully, tomorrow will bring better news...or at least indictments and convictions for those who deserve them...but I won't hold my breathe.

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