Israeli lawyers, Michael Sfard and Avigdor Feldman presented an appeal against the severe restraints placed on the movement and activities of Mordechai Vanunu after he completed his 18 year prison sentence. Among them, are prohibiting him from leaving Israel. In response to their appeal, the Israeli Military Home Command has, eleven years after completing his sentence, now graciously broadened the circle of permitted activities:
The appellant is now permitted, without receiving prior authorization, to conduct an oral incidental conversation with foreigners, as long as such conversation is a one-time matter, conducted face-to-face in a public space open to the broad public, not planned in advance, and not lasting more than 30 minutes.
Conversations with foreigners are not permitted in writing nor in any other form of communication, including the internet.
Instead of revealing its omniscience and omnipotence in controlling the every movement of this individual–such sadistic, brutish, vengeful acts by a state against a single citizen reveals desperation. The Israeli national security state is bankrupt morally. Whatever acts Vanunu engaged in in the past, he’s paid his price. A State that is so afraid of a lone individual is pathetic.
@Richard – “such sadistic, brutish, vengeful acts by a state…” – You have supported not releasing a sick man (spy), Jonathan Pollard, and using him as a bargaining chip and ‘anti-PR’ measurement.
Both Vanunu and Pollard were caught around the same time, but Vanunu have been out of jail for 11 years now. Double standards or cynicism?
Duh, nope. A different legal system. Send your complaint to the US Administration. BTW, the stupid Kahanist (JP) should be released,
Deïr Yassin says
Are you comparing the actions of Pollard and Vanunu ? Are you for real or a Hasbarist trying to distract the commenters from the real issues ?
Oh… NO! Not the H-word again.
Their acts are far from being identical but are comparable in their seriousness and the damage both countries claimed for its security (not that either you or me know much about this matter). To stage one of as a victim of “sadistic, brutish, vengeful acts by a state” and promote keeping the other one (who is sick) as a bargaining chip, is hypocrisy. Is it the fact one betrayed a country you despise and the other helped it?
I would respect it if Richard didn’t comment on Pollard b/c he isn’t focus on the US but rather on Israel, but since Pollard is mentioned in quite a few of his past articles and at least in one as piece in a chess game, I can safely call it being a hypocrite.
it’s a deal @Ariel:
you stop using the meaningless word “Anti-Semitic” and i’ll stop calling you that which you most definitely are … a “Hasbarist”, an israeli apologist who, whenever he opens his mouth, spews hollow, vain, empty, futile, and pointless jabberwocky.
@jjcostandi – “stop using the meaningless word “Anti-Semitic”” – It was used ”’once”’ in a conversation on another topic (which is off-topic) where someone made a huge generalization which basically made any Jewish person who studies a certain subject in Jewish literature – a genocidal maniac.
As for your great definition for “Hasbarist” – Is that what makes you sleep well at night. Just automatically discount anything said by someone thinking different than you do.
I respect the fact RS allows readers with a different point of view comment on his blog (with a few limitations) but commenters dismissing some good points (some a defiantly stupid and do not need a response) by screaming “Hasbarist” is the equivalent of the misuse of the term “Anti-Semitic” in Israeli media – automatic rejection of someone who thinks different then you do.
Richard Silverstein says
@ Ariel: You’re woefully uninformed. First, Vanunu’s “crime” occurred decades ago. He didn’t reveal any major Israeli nuclear secret except that Dimona existed, which the world knew without it ever being publicly confirmed. Nor did he spy for a foreign government as Pollard did. Whatever damage Vanunu did (& how much is quite debatable) is long passed. Second, Vanunu’s sentence is long over. A man who completes his sentence in a democratic society gets to go on with his life and even move to another country. Not so, Israel. Third, Vanunu was kidnapped from a foreign country and drugged in order to spirit him to Israel.
As for Pollard, he hasn’t completed his sentence. Also, he is the spy who caused the most damage to U.S. military & intelligence interests of any in U.S. history. The damage he caused was huge and caused massive expense to rectify. Pollard’s stolen documents were given by the Israelis to the Russians, which caused further immense damage. Pollard was not kidnapped in a foreign country. He was captured in the U.S. though he did try to flee to Israeli jurisdiction & was rebuffed by Israeli diplomats in the U.S.
There is no comparison between the two cases despite your futile efforts to try to create one.
Far from causing damage, Vanunu greatly benefitted humanity. He is a worldwide hero for exposing Israeli and U.S. hypocrisy and danger to peace. He still teaches us lessons with his continued defiance of Israel’s intransigent vengeance (abetted by the U.S., of course) and the simple exposure of a monster nation terrified of one whistleblower.
Hasbarist is of course an accurate if not complete description of Sharon, er, Ariel.
@Eric – “whistleblower” ??? He demanded $1,000,000 to blow that whistle. You can dress him as a hero all you want, but we all know underneath he is simply a criminal who didn’t steal jewelry but state secrets and not for the benefit of the world but to fill his own bank account.
Richard Silverstein says
@ Ariel: This is clearly off-topic. Do NOT do this again.
RS: I got an error message “account not available’ when I send you an email.
Shimon Peres: “Bring him back at any cost to teach him a lesson.”