Architect of Toughness

He first won military fame in the 1950s for his swashbuckling leadership of fierce raids against Arab villages and refugee camps in Jordan and Gaza. After the 1973 October War, his soldiers hailed him "Arik, Arik, King of Israel." Former Israeli Defense Minister Ezer Weizman once wrote: "In war, I'd follow him through fire and flood, but political life has different values." Says a ranking general: "His world is divided into black and white, good guys and bad guys. According to his philosophy, 'Whosoever is not with me must be against me.' "

Defense Minister Ariel ("Arik") Sharon, 54, is the undisputed...

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