a different side of Israel

The Infamous One

Arkadi GaydamakUntil a year ago he was almost anonymous, but now there is not a person in Israel that doesn’t know the name Arkadi Gaydamak. In the past year he organized a party for the rich and famous, became the owners of Beitar Yerushalaim, and established the “tent city” in Nitzanim beach during the second Lebanon war.

But was all this done just to win the favor of the public’s opinion?

Since March 2005, Gaydamak is under police investigation for involvement in an alleged billion dollar money laundering affair.
This past Thursday, Oct. 5th, in an unprecedented move, Gaydamak published an ad in local newspapers, accusing the head of the police’s investigations unit, Yohanan Danino, of conducting a personal crusade against him.

“What are you trying to achieve? You have tried to scare me and ruin my reputation” says Gaydamak in the ad. In addition, Gaydamak accuses Danino of wasting millions of shekels of state funds on the investigation against him.

The attorney general Meni Mazuz and state prosecutor Eran Shendar condemned the ad campaign and defined its contents as baseless accusations. They said they hoped the ad’s timing was not an attempt to sway the decision to hold a hearing for Gaydamak.

Gaydamak has to be reminded that he is now a citizen in a democratic and law abiding country. His charity actions during the second Lebanese war were admirable, but he needs to study that money doesn’t buy everything – especially not the wheels of justice in this country.


  1. Gaydamak reminds me a lot of another colorful character,
    Shmuel “Sammy” Flatto Sharon who came here from France
    to escape being convicted for fiancial wrong-doings.
    Shaon served briefly as a member of the Knesst, after
    forming his own political party and literally buying
    his way into the Knesset. He still lives her and his
    very candid and colorful remarks can often be heard on
    morning talk shows. His gravelly voice and simple, Oleh
    Hadash Hebrew is quaint and humorous, to say the least.

    After his Knesset experience, Sharon lost a relection
    and returned to France to “face the music”. he later
    returned to Israel where he has been living ever since.

    Gaydamak will eventually learn that he too cannot buy
    off the scales of justice. But eventually he may make
    his political mark here.

  2. Where is he from? So glad to hear, eyes are wide open :)

  3. Russia, of course. He had a bit of a ‘problem’ there &
    had to leave.

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