8 years after falling into a coma following a devastating stroke, Ariel Sharon, the former Israeli Prime Minister is reported to be “critically ill”.
If any single man can lay claim to being responsible for the oceans of blood spilt in the Middle East over the last 60 years then the former Israeli General, Minister of Defense, and Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon has as good a claim as any.
During the 1982 Lebanon War, while Sharon was Defense Minister, the Sabra and Shatila massacre occurred between 16 September and 18. Between 800 and 3,500 Palestinian civilians in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps were killed.
The Kahan Commission into this massacre found the Israeli Defence Forces indirectly responsible for the massacre but also concluded that Defense Minister Ariel Sharon bore personal responsibility “for ignoring the danger of bloodshed and revenge” and “not taking appropriate measures to prevent bloodshed”. Sharon’s negligence in protecting the civilian population of Beirut, which had come under Israeli control amounted to a non-fulfillment of a duty with which the Defence Minister was charged. The commission recommended in early 1983 the removal of Sharon from his post as Defense minister.
Ariel Sharon did finally resign as Defense Minister but remained in government for the next 20 years. On 28 September 2000, Ariel Sharon, while successfully campaigning to become Israel’s Prime Minister and escorted by over 1,000 Israeli police officers visited the Temple Mount complex, site of the Dome of the Rockand al-Aqsa Mosque where he declared that the complex would remain under perpetual Israeli control.
This shallow and cynical piece of electioneering, which played on the basest instincts of the Israeli people led to the Al-Aqsa Intifada and for a time ended to the Middle East peace process.
But it got him elected and in 2005, he was voted the 8th-greatest Israeli of all time, in a poll by the Israeli news website Ynet. He remained Prime Minister until his second stroke in 2006.
The director of the hospital where the comatose former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon is being treated says he is in critical condition and his life is in danger.
Zeev Rotstein of Tel Hashomer hospital said on Thursday that the functioning of “several essential organs” has declined but would not elaborate.
Rotstein says Sharon’s condition is “critical” and his “life is in danger”.
He said Sharon’s family is at his bedside.
Sharon, 85, suffered a devastating stroke on 4 January 2006, five years after being elected prime minister. He spent months in hospital in Jerusalem before being transferred to a long-term care facility at Sheba medical centre near Tel Aviv.