For the Likud, the Plot Thickens

By Noga Tarnopolsky

Published January 17, 2003, issue of January 17, 2003.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Cronyism, influence-peddling, the buying and selling of votes and mobsters in high places: The recent scandals swirling around the Likud Party sound like the stuff of a dozen bad (but must-see) movies. A guide to the episodes and characters:

Primary Colors

A network of behind-the-scenes deal-making and chicanery was revealed when an unknown waitress, Inbal Gavrieli, 27, a party member of only six weeks, placed 29th on Likud’s Knesset list, ahead of Jerusalem Mayor Ehud Olmert, among others. Her family has extensive gambling interests and connections with underworld figures. Likud Central Committee figures were forced to resign as a result of the scandal.

Deputy Minister of Infrastructure Naomi Blumenthal was fired by Sharon when she refused to answer police questions about her role in illicitly providing Central Committee members with luxury hotel rooms. Omri Sharon, the prime minister’s son and closest advisor, similarly refused to respond to police questioning but retains his position.

The Greek Tycoons

Media reports and opposition lawmakers charge that Sharon, while serving as foreign minister in the Netanyahu government, inappropriately advanced Tel Aviv businessman David Appel’s commercial interest in acquiring a Greek island — and that Sharon’s younger son, Gilad, was hired to work on the project for a $640,000 salary, with promises of some $3 million more in profits. In 2001, Israel police recommended that Olmert be indicted on the charge of having accepted bribes from Appel, an inveterate wheeler-dealer, whom the police also recommended be put on trial.

Out of South Africa

Authorities are investigating a $1.5 million loan to Sharon or his sons granted by South African businessman Cyril Kern. It’s unclear whether the loan was destined to repay a campaign contribution made by the American firm Annex Research or whether the money was used to offset debts accrued by the Sharon family farm. Israeli law prohibits foreign campaign contributions.

The Conversation

Lior Horev, an advisor to Sharon, is claiming that he has been subjected to surveillance and illegal wiretaps, and points to a videotaped interview with a former police investigator who reportedly describes how the police wiretapped the phones of senior politicians, among them Sharon, Netanyahu and Yisrael Beitenu leader Avigdor Lieberman as part of yet another probe.






Find us on Facebook!
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • "We are not so far removed from the tragedies of the past, and as Jews sit down to the Seder meal, this event is a teachable moment of how the hatred of Jews-as-Other is still alive and well. It is not realistic to be complacent."
  • Aperitif Cocktail, Tequila Shot, Tom Collins or Vodka Soda — Which son do you relate to?
  • Elvis craved bacon on tour. Michael Jackson craved matzo ball soup. We've got the recipe.
  • This is the face of hatred.
  • What could be wrong with a bunch of guys kicking back with a steak and a couple of beers and talking about the Seder? Try everything. #ManSeder
  • BREAKING: Smirking killer singled out Jews for death in suburban Kansas City rampage. 3 die in bloody rampage at JCC and retirement home.
  • Real exodus? For Mimi Minsky, it's screaming kids and demanding hubby on way down to Miami, not matzo in the desert.
  • The real heroines of Passover prep aren't even Jewish. But the holiday couldn't happen without them.
  • Is Handel’s ‘Messiah’ an anti-Semitic screed?
  • Meet the Master of the Matzo Ball.
  • Pierre Dulaine wants to do in his hometown of Jaffa what he did for kids in Manhattan: teach them to dance.
  • "The first time I met Mick Jagger, I said, 'Those are the tackiest shoes I’ve ever seen.'” Jewish music journalist Lisa Robinson remembers the glory days of rock in her new book, "There Goes Gravity."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.