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PostWatch: An irregular correction to the Washington Post

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Friday, January 10, 2003
12:21 PM

Israel's Sharon yanked off the air... This must have been strange:

By Molly Moore

JERUSALEM, Jan. 9 -- Twelve minutes and 37 seconds into Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's prime-time defense tonight against mounting corruption allegations, an Israeli Supreme Court justice pulled the plug on the live broadcast, declaring that Sharon's news conference amounted to an electoral appearance outside the time allotted to candidates.

During one of his most emotional outbursts against those accusing him of shady dealings, Sharon glared into the cameras broadcasting his appearance, slammed his hand on a lectern and shouted: "Have you gone mad? Have you lost your mind?"

It was unclear to whom Sharon was posing those questions, but Supreme Court Justice Mishael Cheshin found that too many of them pointed at the Labor Party, the primary rival of Sharon's Likud Party in elections scheduled Jan. 28. Stunned announcers on national television and radio told their audiences that Cheshin yanked the prime minister off the air for engaging in political propaganda... says:

Israel’s Central Committee will Saturday night discuss Judge Heshin’s decision to cut short Sharon’s broadcast news conference Thursday night alleging he was electioneering for Likud

PM appeared in response to opposition demand that he publicly answer charges of improper 1999 campaign financing. He was taken off the air after ten minutes.

A couple days ago Debka said this:

Despite headlines to the contrary - and falling opinion ratings, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon may not have too much cause for concern over this week’s revelations that a long-time friend, South African textile tycoon Cyril Kern, made a low-interest loan to son Gilad Sharon to pay back illegal foreign contributions to the Likud leader’s 1999 primaries campaign.

Even if Sharon was guilty of wrongdoing – which he is not -- the average Israeli knows that corruption is rampant in Israeli society and is more concerned with Palestinian suicide bombings that have turned life in the Jewish state into a Russian roulette.

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