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      Barak and Askhenazi Trade Broadsides Over Harpaz Affair

      Former IDF chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi says defense minister Ehud Barak is a 'liar,' while Barak calls Askhenazi a 'criminal'
      By Gabe Kahn
      First Publish: 6/6/2012, 9:50 PM

      Barak and Ashkenazi
      Barak and Ashkenazi
      פלאש 90

      Former IDF chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi launched an offensive Wednesday on defense minister Ehud Barak over his conduct in the so-called Harpaz Affair.

      "The obsessive behavior of the defense minister, even today, is characterized by poor judgment to say the least," Ashkenazi said. "The defense minister was expected to devote his time to maintaining the security of Israel."

      "My men have undergone polygraph tests and were telling the truth," said Ashkenazi, "While the men of the defense minister did not do so," Ashkenazi said.

      "Barak and his bureau chief testified and said publicly they did not know lieutenant colonel Boaz Harpaz, in the reserves. I doubt their testimony. Its false."

      Askhenazi added, "My heart is with senior IDF officers with whom I fought shoulder to shoulder. In them I had loyal partners in rehabilitating the IDF after the Second Lebanon War, which led to public complaints out the quality of equipment provided by the defense minister.

      "All officers who have been at the top of the Intelligence services and the General Staff, were appointed because of their skill and professionalism based on the recommendation of their commanders.

      "I'm sorry they have to deal with their subordinates in shame-faced as a result of irresponsible comments made by the defense minister. Israel is blessed to have such officers," Ashkenazi concluded.

      In response, Barak retorted "I wish Gabi Ashkenazi and Erez Wiener would disseminate the State Comptroller's Report and present the truth to the public."

      State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss allegedly harshly criticized former chief of General Staff Gabi Ashkenazi in a draft report on the so-called Harpaz affair.

      Lindenstrauss reportedly dropped strong hints that Ashkenazi was linked to efforts in 2010 to discredit the leading candidate for the chief of staff post, Maj. Gen. Yoav Galant, because he was Defense Minister Ehud Barak's preferred candidate.

      "Instead," Barak continued. They spread lies, as they did throughout the investigation, and mislead the public. More unfortunate, to see someone directly attack his subordinate, Maj. Gen. Yoav Galant, and do all kinds of criminal things to prevent him from being chief of staff."