‘We’ve Become a Group of COWARDS’: New Report Exposes CRISIS in IDF

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A new report prepared by reserve Maj. Gen. Yitzhak Brik, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) commissioner for the rights of IDF soldiers, has become the topic of sensational discussions in Israel.

The report to the country’s parliament, the Knesset, reveals a serious crisis in the IDF, reports the Hebrew edition of Haaretz.

Brik conducted an exceptionally blunt critique of the personnel policy of the Israel Defense Forces. In an official letter, the military based its criticism on a long list of talks with dozens of army officers.

The report describes a mediocre organization that suffers from overburden and exhaustion. They also disapprove of the slackness of commanders and the serious crisis of motivation among the young officers who usually leave the military.

Brik warns that the crisis undermines the readiness of the Israeli Defense Forces for war and cites field officers who warn that the country’s top officials sell a false image that does not correspond to reality.

In his letter, the military mediator quotes a commander of the Army brigade: “We [field officers] have become a group of cowards. I am also ashamed to have stopped mentioning problems at conferences – everything falls on deaf ears.”

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Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot referred to the mediator’s complaints during a closed session of the Foreign and Defense Committee. Eizenkot accepted some of the criticism about the knowledge and organizational discipline of the IDF.

On the other hand, he rejected Brik’s warning about the deficiency of IDF preparations for war and added that he did not have the authority and tools to systematically examine these aspects.

The Israeli army continues to boast the image of being the most capable force in the Middle East, invincible in front of its Arab neighbors. But in Global Firepower’s international ranking, the IDF position is steadily falling, and it cannot be forgotten that Hezbollah defeated the Israeli military in 2006.

In 2014 the Israeli Army was placed 11th, but this year it fell to 16th. The Russian Army, by comparison, is in second place, the Vzglyad newspaper reports.

The former head of the Israeli special service Nativ, Yaakov Kedmi, justifies the situation due to the disappearance of blunt threats against the existence of Israel. Now society is not willing to grant privileges to the army, and the resources used for its maintenance are already high.

“This is seen in everything: both pensions and salaries and all kinds of financial privileges for regular military personnel. In addition, the motivation to serve in the military, which used to be based on the sense of danger and required to give everything for the defense of the state, has been reduced,” said Kedmi.

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