Former chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi of the Israel Defense Forces used a ceremony naming a street after him in Or Yehuda, east of Tel Aviv, Monday, to respond to the draft report by the state comptroller on intrigues surrounding the appointment of his successor. While he was not cited for wrongdoing in the report, members of his staff and the staff of Defense Minister Ehud Barak were taken to task for their handling of the situation.
Ashkenazi told the gathering, "I have never ran away from anything, not on the battlefield, not from criticism. I read the report and am studying it. I thank the state comptroller for the work he invested in it and respect him. We will respond to the matter after we study things properly." Reflecting on media reports of a family connection to the case, he said the last year and a half has not been simple and that the most important thing is that lessons be learned to avoid a repetition of the strained relations that were created between the Chief of Staff's Office and the Defense Minister's Office.