Prime Minister Ehud Olmert
Photo: AFP

PM insists Israel won war

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert tells Ynet in special Passover interview that Israel realized big achievements during last summer's confrontation with Hizbullah but admits some weaknesses were exposed

Israel won last summer's war with Hizbullah despite a hailstorm of criticism by the Israeli public of the army's poor performance, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told Ynet in a special Passover interview.


Although he admitted that the 34-day confrontation had exposed some of Israel's weaknesses, Olmert stressed that his handling of the war was sound.


"I say we had positive results in Lebanon, we had big achievements, we won this war and we were also exposed to some weaknesses," the prime minister said. "I think that eventually this will be the historical judgment, and I will get credit for that."


The prime minister reiterated his full support for Defense Minister Amir Peretz who faced increasing calls to resign over his management of the war.


Olmert also denied that his Kadima faction was witnessing a leadership crisis, brushing off media reports that his relationship with some of the party's key figures had deteriorated.


'Netanyahu disrespectful' 

Olmert slammed opposition leader Likud MK Benjamin Netanyahu for refusing to listen to him during testimonies before the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, saying Netanyahu was only interested in scoring political points against the government.


He described Netanyahu's behavior during these sessions as "disrespectful."


Olmert described as "illegal" State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrass' decision to open of probes into his activities as Industry, Trade and Labor and Finance Minister under former prime minister Ariel Sharon.


"There is no doubt that there is a very strange phenomenon called the State Comptroller," Olmert said.


The State Comptroller's Office is investigating whether Olmert bought his Jerusalem home from a US businessman at a discount price in return for favoring his company's bid for a government tender to sell a controlling share of Bank Leumi.


Olmert is also suspected of having made illegal appointments at the Small Business Authority during his tenure as Industry, Trade and Labor Minister.


Full interview with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will be published Monday evening


Attila Somfalvi contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 03.30.07, 20:07
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