Hebrew daily "Yediot Ahronot" reports that the IDF will fire 4,500 career officers and NCOs by the beginning of 2015 in order to cut costs.
"Yediot Ahronot" says that the layoffs were originally due to be spread over three years, but, because of the need for immediate cost cutting, they will be carried out within a year. The Ministry of Defense has promised a NIS 3 billion budget cut, although it has recently demanded a NIS 4 billion budget supplement. The Knesset Labor, Welfare and Health Committee held a stormy discussion on the subject on Monday.
"Every time there is a budget discussion, IDF career personnel are vilified as if they are stealing from the public purse, and they start to focus on a few senior officers who earn a lot. This is unacceptable. I will fight this," Minister of Defense Moshe Ya'alon told the committee.
Ya'alon said that most career personnel earn the national average salary. "Every time the defense budget is discussed, career personnel are put on the pyre, and regrettably, they succeed in damaging their image. It's unacceptable that the Ministry of Finance does not keep agreements, and it's unacceptable that they continue to vilify career soldiers."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on October 29, 2013
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