Olmert Laid Out updated


This story actually broke earlier today in the
Jeruselum Post
and the Guardian,
with the Washington Post chiming in for tomorrow.

An official Israeli investigative committee on Monday accused Prime Minister
Ehud Olmert of “a serious failure in exercising judgment, responsibility
and prudence” in taking the country to war in Lebanon last summer.

The interim findings of the Winograd Committee also sharply criticized Defense
Minister Amir Peretz for not grasping “the basic principles of using
military force to achieve political goals” and accused Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz,
the army chief of staff at the time, of acting “impulsively” in
advocating an “immediate, intensive military strike” to secure the
release of two captured Israeli soldiers.

Failures
by Israeli Leaders Detailed

Panel Sharply Critical of Premier, Defense Minister and Army Chief
–Don't miss the photo at the link above.–

The over the top abuses of the Olmert government in handling
the Lebanon
conflict
last fall were atrocious,
but he had some
help from Mr. Bush
. Words fail me as I remember the
days
unfolding from
over here. Bush responded like it was another
Katrina
. I covered the entire sorry mess, which got worse with each passing
day. From Lebanon to Iraq you could see the Saudis
falling by the wayside, as Bush becomes smaller and smaller in our once faithful allies eyes.

The simple truth is that Olmert let Hezbollah play him, but it goes deeper
than that simple assessment. The report says that the Israeli army “was
not ready for this war.”
This is a very damning and dangerous criticism
given that Israel's bluster is always on high and their enemies surround them. Is it any wonder that rumors
have been flying about Olmert wanting to talk with Bashir Assad, while Mr. Bush
and the neocons find that their worst nightmare to contemplate? Speaker
Pelosi going to the region
put a spotlight on some changing dynamics in
there that the Bush neocons do not want to have manifest, but which have unfolded under Mr. Bush's incompetent foreign policy. Ms. Rice running around the region in planes is hardly a policy. But it is one reason
I believe Olmert
sandbagged Pelosi at Dick Cheney's request
. Democrats doing diplomacy is a no-no.

It's the never ending contest of who is more pro Israel? But I digress.

Of course Ehud Olmert
is not the only one getting creamed in the new report. Israeli defense minister Amir Peretz is also being asked to resign. Fat chance.

Waiting in the wings is the current foreign minister Tzippi Livni, Sharon's protégé, who is reportedly
not going to try to oust Olmert, but who is also making it clear that she's
ready to lead.

Meanwhile, don't count the neocons out just yet, because if Olmert falls and Livni can't hold
things together you just might see the rise of everyone's favorite Israeli neocon:
Binyamin Netanyahu. …and you think things are bad now?

UPDATE (5.1.07): Glenn Greenwald writes it up today.