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Israel To Hold Lebanon War Inquiry

The Israeli Cabinet on Sunday authorized an inquiry into the government's handling of the recent war in Lebanon, capping weeks of disagreements over the scope of the investigation.

The inquiry headed by a retired judge will look at decisions by political and military leaders but it will not have full judicial powers to dismiss officials, despite widespread public calls for a broader inquiry.

The Cabinet approved the inquiry by a 20-2 vote, with one abstention, the government said.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, the government and the army have faced strong criticism for their handling of the 34-day war against Hezbollah, based on accusations that the government accepted a U.N.-brokered cease-fire without crushing the militia or freeing two soldiers captured by Hezbollah at the start of the fighting.

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