Amidror: ´Israel´s Gov´t Allowed Hizbullah to Build Up'

Maj.-Gen. Yaakov Amidror says that for the past six years, the government made a conscious decision to allow Hizbullah to build up its military capabilities on the border with Israel.

Hillel Fendel, | updated: 12:42

Amidror formerly served as Deputy Chief of IDF Intelligence and the head of its Research and Assessment Department.

"The Hizbullah attack was no surprise for the IDF," Amidror told IsraelNationalRadio's Alex Traiman and Baruch Gordon. "It was always understood that Hizbullah is preparing something against us; the only question was exactly what and when."

"Then why didn't the IDF stop it?" Gordon asked. Amidror replied,
"This is an important question. Ever since our retreat from Lebanon [in May 2000], Israel's political decision-makers decided that Israel would not take the initiative anywhere on the Lebanese border. We were able to see, hear, and detect what Hizbullah was preparing, but we would not take the initiative against them. Because of the political arrangements with the international community, it was decided to let them shoot first - and the consequences are now very clear. If you don't take the initiative, and you allow the enemy to shoot whenever and wherever he wants, then even if he fails 20 times, at the end he succeeds."

Amidror emphasized the importance of not allowing the army to make the decisions:
"In a democracy, the army presents the scenarios and warns of the consequences of various options. The elected representatives are supposed to make the final decisions - hopefully the correct ones...

"For sure, the IDF is unable to fulfill its obligation to stop terrorism if it does not receive orders to do so, no matter what. But if the instructions are to 'stop the terrorism but don't hit Gaza streets,' it cannot be done; the most that can be done is to decrease it. The only way to stop terrorism is by going in to the area and gaining control of the ground. Nothing else can stop the terrorism... I believe that the slogan of 2002 - 'Let the IDF Win!' - was a very good one. It means providing the political environment and decision that gives the army the ability to do the job."




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