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Monday, January 30, 2006

Mofaz's Political Considerations Governed Protective Measures

Somehow I didn't see this one until now - but then I haven't seen it on any other blogs either. Hat Tip: Benny in Psagot. If this is true, it's appalling....

Mofaz's Political Considerations Governed Protective Measures

Defense Minister Sha'ul Mofaz gave orders against actions such as buttressing Jewish towns adjacent to Gaza - so as not to lead to a perception that the disengagement might worsen Israeli security.

Evidence for the above charge is found in the State Comptroller's official report, issued this past Sunday. The report details the government's failure to adequately defend Jewish communities near the Gaza border. It is the first in a series critiquing the government's handling of the disengagement from Gaza.

Senior army officers said, not for attribution, that if it is true that the Defense Minister knew that security would decrease, and yet still acted to delay the reinforcing of the towns for political reasons, then this is a most grave issue. "In any normal country," one officer said, "the minister would have to resign in such a case."

The "smoking gun" sentence in the Comptroller's report was not reported in the media until Arutz-7's Haggai Huberman publicized it this morning. Huberman reports that on page 13 of the report, the Comptroller writes as follows:

"In June 2004, some three weeks after the government decision on the Disengagement Plan, the Defense Minister held a consultation on 'Presenting IDF Plans for the Disengagement.' in this forum, a plan was also presented for reinforcing security of the communities adjacent to Gaza. Among those present were the Chief of Staff [and other senior officers]. The Defense Minister approved at that meeting a program entitled 'First Response for Seven Gaza-Adjacent Communities' at a cost of 130 million shekels."

The report then goes on to say, however, that Mofaz then issued a critical warning: "In that meeting, he warned against actions and remarks (regarding reinforcement and in general) liable to broadcast and give over the sense that security would be lessened as a result of the Disengagement." (emphasis added)

The Comptroller concludes in his report that the plan was, in fact, never carried out.

Read it all.


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