Former president Katzav has been sentenced to seven years in prison. Minutes later the newspapers were already filled with Knesset members, Women groups etc, all celebrating the sentencing as a great day for Israeli democracy. I pointed out a few weeks ago, that finding the man guilty was not a great day for democracy - and anyone claiming it was, has proven a lack of confidence in the courts. What would have happened if Katzav had been found innocent? would it then have been a tragic day for democracy? the belief that a certain position showed that all citizens are equal is an oxymoron.
The sentence was harsh by Israeli standards, but not really a surprise. From the second Katzav was found guilty there could be little doubt that as a public figure his sentence would be harsh. Reports indicate that Katzav did not take his sentence in a stoic fashion, but instead called out during the reading, and finally burst in tears. It is hard not to feel some sympathy for a man who's position in history has so dramatically altered. However it is important to remember that he is not the victim but rather the convicted rapist.