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Iranian Nuclear Program

Israeli general touches raw nerve with Holocaust comments

In a reflection of the deep divisions plaguing Israel, a top general set off a controversy Thursday after appearing to liken the atmosphere in Israel to that of Nazi-era Germany during a speech marking the country's Holocaust memorial day.

The comments, coming on one of the country's most sensitive and sacred days, enraged Israeli nationalists. The episode also underscored an increasingly evident rift between hard-liners in the government and the country's security chiefs — who tend to be more pragmatic than many politicians on its troubled relations with the Palestinians.

In a speech Wednesday night, Maj. Gen. Yair Golan, the military's deputy chief of staff, said the...