News in Brief

Undercover ex-paratrooper helps nab drug ring

Thirty-eight suspected drug dealers in Jerusalem were arrested in a number of coordinated predawn raids in the city on Tuesday, the culmination of a yearlong police investigation starring a 23-year-old undercover agent. The agent was a former combat soldier in the Paratroops, who spent 10 months cultivating relationships with the alleged dealers in order to purchase drugs to be used as evidence in their prosecution. The suspects were brought before a judge after their arrest for remand hearings. In the course of Tuesday's raids the police took possession of NIS 150,000 in cash as well as 10 vehicles belonging to the suspects that detectives believe were purchased using profits from sales of illegal drugs. (Oz Rosenberg)

Women unrepresented in gay youth group

Female members of Israel's gay youth organization are protesting the lack of women in key positions, following the dismissal a few days ago of the group's deputy director general. A petition posted on the web claimed that the woman had been fired to make way for a man. The petition said all key positions were held by men, that the group's leaders were not democratically elected, and that only men were slated to speak at an organizational event next week in Tel Aviv. An activist, Noa Miller, said "the Gay Youth Organization is meant to represent everyone and it is light years from this." (Ilan Lior)

Yale to publish Begin biography in English

An English version of Avi Shilon's 2008 biography of Prime Minister Menachem Begin will be released next month in the United States and Great Britain by Yale University Press. Shilon said "Menachem Begin: A Life," which was translated from the original Hebrew by Danielle Zilberberg and Yoram Sharett, was updated for the new edition. "I enjoyed working with and learning from Yale's excellent editors," Shilon said, adding that the book appeals to a broader audience than its academic publisher might suggest and that he hopes it will be read widely in the United States, especially in the Jewish community. (Maya Sela)

TA first stop on Depeche Mode's world tour

The British synthpop band Depeche Mode announced Tuesday that Tel Aviv is to be the first stop on next year's world tour to promote an upcoming album. Tickets for the May 7 performance in Tel Aviv's Hayarkon Park go on sale tomorrow. A seat on the lawn will cost NIS 295 during the presale period. The group announced the tour in Paris. Lead singer Dave Gahan said in a statement that at its 2009 concert in the Ramat Gan stadium Depeche Mode promised "50,000 amazing fans in Israel" that it would be returning soon. That performance, held three years after the group canceled a date at the last minute, at the height of the Second Lebanon War, received mixed reviews. (Ben Shalev)