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Pointless Wars And Insider Trading

From Time: In Israel, the Political Casualties Start to Mount

The Lebanon cease-fire is holding for a second day, but the casualties in Israeli politics are just starting to mount. Israeli Defense Forces Chief of Staff Dan Halutz, an ex-fighter pilot who was the chief strategist of Israel’s less-than-satisfactory war against Hizballah, is still catching flak for Israel’s failure to deliver a killing blow to Hizballah during the four-week campaign. But Haltuz is now in deep trouble on the home front as well, where he stands accused of an unusual case of insider trading that some might argue borders on war profiteering.

On Tuesday the Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv claimed that three hours after Hizballah fighters ambushed an Israeli patrol, killing eight soldiers and kidnapping two others – the event that triggered the war – Haltuz called his stock broker and asked him to sell off nearly $30,000 of his shares. Haltuz got his money out just in time; the Tel Aviv stock market fell by over 8% in the first two days of the war.

I’ve been in shooting wars and so was my Dad. We have both owned stock. I know that I didn’t, and don’t remember my Dad ever calling a broker because we had been alerted to go to a war footing.

I admit that I always get cash out if I think a hurricane is heading my way, but I don’t call a broker.