He grew up in a small town, in a poor family, studied law, excelled and moved up in the ranks of the civil service, is married to a policewoman and reached the top of the law enforcement apparatus. He is Moshe Mizrahi. He is Meni Mazuz. The resemblance between the head of the police investigations team from Tiberias and the attorney general designate from Netivot clash in the present act of the drama - possibly the prison drama - of the Appel-Sharon affair.
Mizrahi is in Edna Arbel's camp, which is closing in, legally, on Ariel Sharon, as though he were an ordinary citizen. The politicians who will today appoint Mazuz attorney general expect him to have mercy on the prime minister and will fudge the case. This is what the previous attorney general, Elyakim Rubinstein, who waged war on Mizrahi, did not have time to do.
When Rubinstein submitted his report disapproving of the police practice of wiretapping Avigdor Lieberman, he also put in an uncalled-for mention of David Appel, to the delight of Appel's lawyers, who are now sure to try to use it to get Appel off the hook.
These conversations, first described as "political" and left on the shelf, have recently been combed again and found to include added incriminating evidence against the parties on tape. The Sharon case will not be closed for lack of guilt. It may ripen into an indictment, or be closed for lack of sufficient evidence. The latter eventuality would expose Mazuz to a petition to the High Court of Justice demanding he explain why he overturned the recommendations of the professional legal team headed by Arbel. If Mazuz loses in the High Court, the shadow of defeat will follow him throughout his term in office. If he wins, he will be tainted.
His only way out is to announce that he intends to examine the material with the aim of persuading the professional team, or to be persuaded by it, but not to force his opinion. Arbel has more experience than Mazuz, after serving as district judge and state prosecutor, eight years in each post. Wisdom requires that he avoid dealing with this matter. Through most of January, Arbel served as acting attorney general. As such, filling in between Rubinstein and Mazuz, she rightly chose to act rather than to do nothing.
Arbel and Mizrahi are leading a firm line in Sharon's two-part affair. The Appel "Greek island" affair is only one part. Next month the "Austrian" part will be added. This is the affair of the circular funding of Sharon's primaries, which is pending a legal decision on the Gilad Sharon documents' affair, that separate between alleged evidence of election funding offenses and bribery suspicion.
Gilad Sharon is emerging as the Israeli Steve Austin, the Six Million Dollar Man - in every one of the chapters a nice sum of $3 million magically appears, either paid or promised him from Appel's or the mysterious Austrian's account.
Had an unknown philanthropist deposited such a fortune in the bank account of a police officer, or an income tax clerk, the law would have come down on these civil servants like a ton of bricks, especially on men in blue. Woe betide Major General Mizrahi or Brigadier General Miri Golan had Mizrahi's sons or Golan's twin daughters come across such sudden wealth. A police detective was convicted last year, although the judge established that he used his commercial contacts to the advantage of his unit rather than for personal benefit. Rubinstein and Arbel's indulgence (with a faint protest from Mizrahi) toward Sharon when he ceased to be foreign and infrastructures minister, in the Russian gas case, did not make him stick to the straight and narrow. He dove straight into the Greek puddle, then the Austrian, as a victim of his character.
If Mazuz takes it upon himself to rescue Sharon, he will cause himself harm, but Sharon will not be saved. Sharon's decisions have lost even the semblance of moral authority. Even if he manages to hang onto his post by the skin of his teeth, with the help of legal counsel, Sharon will remain at most a legal prime minister, not a legitimate one.
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