'Israel Was Not Prepared for Gaza Op'

MK Ofer Shelah (Yesh Atid) asserts security cabinet at fault for lack of preparedness during last summer's Operation Protective Edge.

Cynthia Blank ,

MK Ofer Shelah
MK Ofer Shelah
Flash 90

Nine months after Israel was dragged into Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, politicians are still complaining about the government's handling of the military campaign. 

MK Ofer Shelah (Yesh Atid) criticized on Sunday what he saw as Israel's lack of preparation and readiness to fight the summer war. 

"This is a problem that began with the cabinet's decision-making process and trickled down to the IDF itself, " he argued. 

Speaking on a Channel Ten morning show, Shelah - who is a former IDF officer - addressed an interview published in Haaretz's weekend edition, in which he issued similar criticism. 

"I waited until now because I did not want to give critique before the elections. I didn't want the lessons of the summer war to be linked on any level to elections or to the electoral struggle," he claimed.

Beginning his critique, Shelah alleged that security forces knew a war was coming but were not prepared for it when it eventually arrived.

"The security system has a serious problem in turning information into real and relevant knowledge. The most difficult thing is we knew this war would come, and we knew exactly how it would look. There were no surprises. And despite that, we still weren't ready."

Shelah also blamed the lion's share of the so-called failure on the conduct of the security cabinet during the war. 

"The flawed decision-making process began from a failure in the cabinet - how it looked, who was a member and how he became a member, and which things were up for discussion - which then affected the IDF's preparations."

Shelah promised to work during his second term as an MK to correct deficiencies in the security system. 

"These problem of the inability to learn, to draw conclusions, and make knowledge out of information, have plagued the political and security systems for many years. We've never stopped to take care of this," he asserted. 

"It requires very substantial changes, ranging from security strategy to military restructuring," Shelah argued. "If we continue in the same situation, God forbid, what happened this summer will happen again."