Two papers comment on the decision of Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan to appoint Brig.-Gen. (res.) Gal Hirsch, to head the Israel Police:
The Jerusalem Post writes that the decision to pick an outsider "has aroused an expected storm of protest. Personal ambition aside, much of the criticism has been more of the same: The next inspector-general should be appointed from police ranks; an outsider lacks sufficient professional background. But this ostensibly objective qualification fails the test of reality, as virtually every senior police officer first served in a similar command capacity in the IDF. The role of Israel Police inspector-general is a ministerial post that requires a capable administrator, not a top detective in the job. An untainted outsider is the proverbial new broom that Erdan hopes will sweep clean. It is no secret that the Israel Police is overdue for serious adjustment of its organizational culture."
Haaretz writes: "Hirsch, who was a career army officer until 2006 and served until recently in the reserves, was an outstanding officer. His being forced out the IDF due to criticism of his performance before and during the Second Lebanon War was unfortunate for him and for the military, which lost a talented and experienced commander. But neither this, nor Erdan’s scathing opinion about the situation in the Israel Police and its top brass’ responsibility for it, was enough to make Hirsch a clear candidate for repairing the police’s punctured tires and driving it in new directions. A patrol car is not an armored personnel carrier, and a policeman is not a soldier. Erdan is mistaken: The police actually must improve the civilian aspects of their mission – preserving public order, serving the citizen, supervising traffic and above all crime. It’s doubtful whether a military commander, however talented, is suited for this."
Yisrael Hayom comments on the visit to Tehran by British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond to reopen the British embassy there. Hammond is reported to have said that "Iran is too large a player, too important a player in this region, to simply leave in isolation," and that Iran can be an "ally in fighting terrorism." This is reminiscent of "the rhetoric that has been flowing from European powers to legitimize to themselves how it is that they can do business with some of the worst regimes in the world." The paper remarks: "Claiming that Iran can be ‘an ally in fighting terrorism’ is as absurd as allowing it to inspect its own nuclear sites. Iran is among the leading state sponsors of terrorism in the world, its specialty being terrorism against Israel and against Jews around the world. Even the British Foreign Office is aware of this." Finally, it comments on an online petition to arrest Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for "war crimes" upon his arrival on an official visit to London in September: "It is interesting that those 85,000 concerned British citizens and self-declared champions of human rights who want to see the Israeli prime minister arrested for imaginary ‘war crimes’ do not have the smallest issue with the U.K. doing business with the Iranian regime."
Yediot Aharonot comments that ‘Look Who’s Back’ – a German satirical film based on the bestselling novel by Timur Vermes which describes Adolph Hitler’s return after decades of deep sleep – should not have been made for same reasons Charlie Chaplin regretted making ‘The Great Dictator’ – a film he made before he knew what the Nazi dictator did to the world. "After realizing who this dictator really was, he took every opportunity in which he appeared before the public or the media to emphasize that had he known of Hitler’s actions, he would never have made the immortal film. If a genius like Charlie Chaplin determined that he would never make a satire of Hitler, even though the film represented a professional achievement for him, why should we be willing today to see a German satirical film on the most vicious murderer in human history?"
[Noah Klieger and Judith Bergman wrote today’s articles in Yediot Aharonot and Israel Hayom, respectively.]