Thank you for this piece.
In my view the problem created is not "just" moral first and strategic second: There are institutional and Jewish consequences.
First, the Shalit "deal" wipes out the meaning of the life sentence from the books in Israel. Second, it perpetrates the wholesale abuse of the presidential pardon.
To correct these distortions of the legal system we must now pretend mandatory death penalty, even if we are not pro-death penalty people, and the limitation of the presidential pardon to let's say 5 cases per tenure: Peres cannot belittle his unforgivable deeds of unleashing thousands of hardened terrorist on us by saying "I don’t forgive and I don't forget": In his quality as the president of this State, he does exactly that!
As far as the Jewish aspect is concerned, you have rightly pointed out that halachicly (by Jewish Law) we are prohibited to pay more for a hostage than his "worth".
Conclusion: By putting these aspects together we see that the State of Israel as we know it is neither Jewish nor it is democratic. So, what is it then? There is a colloquial term to describe such joints. We call them "Banana Republic"s
Ariel Ben Yochanan
- This is a talkback on Column One: A pact signed in Jewish blood
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