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Investigating Olmert

By Michael Freund
6/9/2006, 12:00 AM

Ehud Olmert is in trouble.

Despite the Government's best efforts to avoid a serious inquiry into its handling of this summer's Lebanon war, it now seems all but certain that wide-ranging investigation will, at last, take place.

Speaking before the Knesset State Control Committee today, State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss made clear that he has every intention of conducting a thorough examination of the Government's conduct of the war.

When asked if he would question the Prime Minister too, Lindenstrauss said, "We will investigate everyone who had a hand and leg in the war" (it sounds better in the Hebrew original). He added that he would be submitting an interim report to the Committee soon containing his initial findings.

This is especially important, because under Israeli law, only two bodies have the power to order the establishment of an official state commission of inquiry: the Government itself, and the Knesset State Control Committee.

Hence, once Lindenstrauss submits his report, the Committee can then move forward with creating a state commission – a step that is likely to turn up the pressure on Olmert, Defense Minister Amir Peretz and others to resign. Which is precisely what most of the public is clamoring for.

Stay tuned….