Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was heckled and an Israeli government minister was forced to leave a state memorial ceremony for the 44 people killed in the Carmel fire. The relatives and friends at Wednesday's memorial at Kibbutz Beit Oren, which sustained damage in the fire, allowed President Shimon Peres to speak but began heckling Netanyahu when he began his turn. Bodyguards had to protect Netanyahu as some of the hecklers advanced toward the stage. The hecklers blamed Netanyahu for the fire and their relatives' deaths.
More than 500 clergy signed a letter to President Obama urging clemency for Jonathan Pollard. The letter was delivered a day before Prime Minister Benjanim Netanyahu reportedly sent a letter to Obama issuing a formal clemency request. Netanyahu was scheduled to read his letter Tuesday evening to a Knesset plenum discussion. "After more than two and a half decades in prison, Mr. Pollard's health is declining," reads the letter sent Monday from rabbis representing all streams, as well as a number of leading Protestant and Roman Catholic clergy. "He has repeatedly expressed remorse for his actions, and by all accounts has served as a model inmate. Commuting his sentence to time served would be a wholly appropriate exercise of your power of clemency -- as well as a matter of basic fairness and American justice. It would also represent a clear sense of compassion and reconciliation -- a sign of hope much needed in today's world of tension and turmoil."