ARIEL SHARON ISRAEL

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Ariel Sharon's Life of Vigorous Inertia

It is difficult to overstate Sharon's shaping of the state of Israel. He fought in every war of the quarter-century from 1948 onwards, and played leading roles in both the military and political spheres for over a half-century. Whether as a criminal or hero (and each assessment is amply represented), his every move reorganized the chessboard. Sharon's political ambitions and calculations contributed to the rise of Likud, and when his tactics had changed, another grand reorganization occurred culminating in Kadima and the eventual return of Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister.