James Bond to the Rescue

Daniel Cohen, the law student who asked his classmates for recordings of the lectures given by attorney Uri Corb, the same lawyer whose transcripts were published Friday in Yedioth Ahronoth, has an interesting phone number: the last three digits are 007. This James Bond has come in on the side of defendant Ehud Olmert.

While jurists like to look for "who benefited," look for a motive, there is no evidence that former prime minister Ehud Olmert initiated the report meant to get rid of the prosecutor in his trial. After all, Olmert is not aware of any questionable receipts within his party, or assistance in getting the Greek island to David Apell, or accumulating money though booking flights with Rishon Tours.

It is always his aides, those loyal to him - Shula Zaken or Rachel Risby-Raz or Uri Messer. How can the newspaper downplay the report on his indictment, yet do everything in its power to rally in his favor and crucify Corb, in order to take down the backbone of the prosecution, 10 days before the trial?

Morris Talansky is not passing envelopes to Olmert once again, but the Gods of coincidence are working in his favor, with a little assistance from James Bond.

Corb was not careful, speaking freely and without any inhibitions before his students. His nonchalance was uncharacteristic of experienced criminal attorneys. For more than a month, he'd known about the tapes that may have made their way to the Olmert camp.

Corb's remarks about Israeli judges cannot be left unanswered by the department. Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein and State Prosecutor Moshe Lador must teach him a lesson and show that low blows against the judiciary are unacceptable. Were they quick like the Olmert camp, they would have already done so last night: they would have called Corb in for a quick word, to hear his side of the story, and given him an appropriate punishment - like freezing his advancement by two years. That is more or less what Brigadier-General Moshe Tamir got when legal proceedings against him were completed for much more serious violations.

But there is no connection between what Corb said, which must be heard in context in order to understand how serious the statements were, and his continued role in the Olmert case. Having an uncompromising, tough prosecutor is a good thing for the country, someone who wants to win a very important criminal case. There is no reason to remove him from the case, despite what the defendant might want.

Olmert belongs to a group of public figures who believe the best defense, even if during questioning or the actual trial, is attack. This group includes Aryeh Deri, who pressured the police to change the detectives on his case; Haim Ramon, who used political and media influence against the investigators and prosecution; Avigdor Lieberman, with his assault against then-chief investigator Moshe Mizrahi; and Ofer Nimrodi, who used police officers to his achieve his own ends.

Olmert was not only aggressive in his testimony during past cases against him, he also acquired spokespeople who had previously represented the prosecution and the judiciary - because it is always good to be acquainted with the enemy.

And the purpose is always the same: Undermine the ability of both the investigators and the prosecutors to deal with the suspects.