Defense minister slams Locker Committee report

Moshe Ya'alon
Moshe Ya'alon

Moshe Ya'alon: The report gambles with the security of Israelis.

Political responses were heard today to the Locker Committee report for examining the defense budget and streamlining in the defense establishment. The committee made 53 recommendations. Minister of Defense Moshe Ya'alon said, "The report is shallow, extremely unbalanced, and completely disconnected from reality surrounding and inside Israel."

"If implemented, the report will be a gamble with the security of Israelis," Ya'alon declared.

At the same time, ministers in the security cabinet welcomed the conclusions. "The Locker Committee report is a brave report for a brave army. It has a social, defense, and economic message, and constitutes a rare opportunity for radical reform," Minister of Education and Habayit Hayehudi Party chairman Naftali Bennett said.

According to Bennett, a member of the security cabinet, the recommendations should be implemented. "The report distinguishes between combat and non-combat soldiers, between those wounded in battle and those wounded on vacation in traffic accidents. It streamlines and cuts back headquarters and administration staff, thereby freeing up resources for the IDF's supreme purpose - defeating our enemies. The report balances between Israel's existential needs and the quality of its society. This report must not be ignored like the Brodet, Goren, and Ben-Bassat reports, which were never implemented. We must not miss this historic opportunity. I call for bringing the report up for discussion and a vote as soon as possible - Israel will only profit from it," Bennett added.

On the other hand, former Minister of Defense Amir Perez (Zionist Union) expressed concern that the recommendation would harm the members of the permanent army. "Unfortunately, the treatment of those serving in the permanent army in Israel is insulting and humiliating, and constitutes a violation of the state's explicit obligation to those serving it. The planned measure will create an atmosphere making it difficult to recruit people to the permanent army in the future," he said, adding, "We mustn't forget that members of the permanent army also have families and debts, and they are also deserving of protection. They have no union, because the law prevents them from organizing. The Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee must protect them."

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on July 21, 2015

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2015

Moshe Ya'alon
Moshe Ya'alon
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