The “moral” state

Yossi Melman, Haaretz, May 17:

Amir Peretz thinks of himself as a “social” defense minister. As someone who comes from the civilian world, he has an opportunity to also be a moral defense minister – not only in his approach toward the Palestinians, but also in the way the defense ministry affects foreign policy. I am referring to one of the most unregulated fields of Israeli policy – arms dealing.

Israeli arms dealers run wild around the world, ruining Israel’s reputation as a country. There is hardly a military conflict, ethnic confrontation or civil war where there are not Israeli weapons dealers, security consultants, instructors and protection squads to be found on one side or the other – and sometimes on both. They sell Israeli-made products, from Israel Defense Forces surpluses or other sources, to anyone who asks. It can be a bloodthirsty dictator, a militia commander or a chief of staff.