Here's an update to the story that Larry Summers turned down Bibi Netanyahu's offer to be the Israeli equivalent of the Chairman of the Fed. From YNetNews
back on June 18th:
Netanyahu has also approached Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Shalom Bernanke, 60, who will be ending his term soon after eight years in office. Bernanke, a Jew, has an Israeli connection as well: Stanley Fischer [Israel's retiring American citizen central banker] was his thesis advisor at MIT.
This would be different from the Israeli government's approach to Summers, who is currently a private citizen (although always on short lists for important jobs). Bernanke was (and is) one of the three or four most powerful figures in the United States government. Bernanke has huge power both as a central banker and a financial regulator. Is it too much to ask foreign governments to have the good grace to wait until the Chairman of the Federal Reserve is out of power before approaching him with lucrative offers?
Of course, none of this is fully confirmed, but it's interesting that nobody in America was terribly interested in the propriety of all this back then. In Israel, however, the public has a more nationalistic view. The Wall Street Journal
[link fixed] has now taken up the Summers-Bernanke story:
The approach has stoked domestic ire against Mr. Netanyahu for allegedly overlooking qualified Israeli candidates.