Last Friday afternoon, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak sat down with TIME's Jerusalem bureau chief Lisa Beyer for an exclusive interview.
The withdrawal was very much your baby. If it brings quiet, you're a genius. If it doesn't, you're in serious trouble?
I don't perceive leadership as a kind of gambling. There is a certain element of calculated risk. We are facing a lot of uncertainties, but my job is not to be paralyzed by the uncertainties--to try to play it in a way that will encourage the probability of good results.
What compelled your decision to withdraw?