[Freemanlist2] Amir Rapaport- iSRAELI MoD - A Sequence of Failures

Freeman Center For Strategic Studies bernards at sbcglobal.net
Fri Jun 22 08:34:49 CDT 2012


For Zion's sake I will not hold my peace 
and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest." Isaiah 62.


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A Sequence of Failures
Why is the MoD seeking measures to protect the Egyptian border only now? Why is Israel procuring Chinese gunpowder while IMI's ammunition factory is dried up? Who will be responsible for Israeli children not having CBRN kits? And why is the latest round of combat with Hamas expected to end soon?

Amir Rapaport 22/6/2012

Why must we wait for blood to spill in order to see budgets freed for 
measures that were clearly needed in advance? The reason is that state 
clerks and monetary persons rule leaders that have become terrified of 
investigating committees.

The criminal neglect of the firefighter layout, revealed this week in its 
full ingloriousness with the State Comptroller's report, is just one example 
of how the country is being managed like a poorly budgeted grocery store 
rather than a high-tech company with vision. Either way, eventually, the 
issue of the fence along the Egypt-Israel border will be worthy of its own 

This week, a terror attack took place along the Egypt-Israel border at a 
construction site of the fence. Years before this attack, following Israel’s 
departure from Gaza in 2005, it was decided that an advanced fence was 
needed. At the time, the IDF knew that the evacuation of the Philadelphia 
route would allow terrorists from the Gaza Strip to cross into Egypt and 
infiltrate Israel through its 240 km of fenceless border. Despite this 
assessment and several terror attacks between 2006-2010, work along the 
border only began after a lengthy delay, and was only accelerated after 
Egypt’s grip over Sinai deteriorated and illegal migrants began stream 

It was only at a very late stage that the Israeli government funded the 
“hourglass” project to construct a “dumb” fence along parts of the border. 
Last year, it was decided that the partial fence would be reinforced with 
regional measures such as radars, cameras, and other sensors in areas deemed 
likely to be breached. Was this enough? As it turns out, it wasn’t.

Only in the past few days has the Ministry of Defense begun to examine the 
possibility of installing electrical measures to turn the fences into 
“smart” ones. Unfortunately, due to a lack of infrastructure, the 
installation of the measures at this late stage will cost much more money 
than had they been installed at the start of construction.

Southern Terror Attack

The IDF is still not entirely sure who was behind the border attack near 
Kadesh Barnea. However, claims made by the Arab media that the attack was 
caused by terrorists associated with Global Jihad are not unreasonable.

It is impossible not to view the terror attack and the volley of rockets 
towards the western Negev against the background of the large election drama 
unfolding in Egypt. The elections, which have yet to be decided, are almost 
as important to Israel as they are to Egypt. If the Muslim Brotherhood is 
declared the winner, the peace agreement between Israel and Egypt could 
suffer a de facto clinical death.

What is interesting is that this terror attack resulted in a round of combat 
between Israel and Hamas, to which both sides were dragged into with a clear 
lack of desire. On one hand, this is the first time that Hamas was involved 
in fire towards Israel in many months. In the previous rounds, the 
Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Palestinian Resistance Committees were the 
ones that launched the Grad rockets. On the other hand, the organization has 
been cautious: it did not launch rockets into the heart of Israel's southern 
cities, but instead settled for harassing fire towards the outskirts of the 
various towns. While this does not mean that this combat round can’t evolve 
into genuine combat in the coming days, it's likely that the fire will die 
out, since it’s not in the interests of either party.

The Mask Failure

It's pretty clear that in the future, investigatory committees will deal 
with the failure surrounding CBRN protection masks – an ordeal that has 
already been going on for several years and is still not resolved despite 
old warnings.

In short, Israel ceased the funding of the protective kit refreshment 
project in the middle of the last decade, as it required an investment of 
more than 100 million NIS annually to preserve the functionality of the kits 
for the entire populace. When the distribution of the kits was renewed two 
years ago, no funds were allocated to close the gap that accumulated over 
the years. Since then, the project has suffered from poor budgeting. The 
result is that today, there are functional CBRN kits for only 60% of the 
population, and the situation is especially bad with the CBRN kits for 
children; warehouses and homes have proper CBRN kits for less than half of 
the children in Israel.

How does this settle with the scenario recently brought up in various forums 
by IDF officials and Israel's Minister of Strategic Affairs, Moshe Ya’alon, 
which say Hezbollah will get chemical weapons from Assad’s crumbling regime 
in Syria and threaten Israel? It doesn't. However, if citizens storm the 
refreshment stations in the event of war, and there are insufficient kits 
for everyone, or worse – if people are unprotected against a chemical 
attack – answers will be demanded by an investigatory committee, or at the 
very least, by Israel’s State Comptroller.

The Ammunition Failure

Speaking of failures, in the past few years Israel decided to procure 
gunpowder from China in an attempt to save a few tens of millions of NIS. 
This resulted in the downturn of Israel Military Industries' (IMI) heavy 
ammunition factory, which is already finding it difficult to end the month 
and pay its employees from the Ministry of Defense fund. The decision to 
procure cheap explosives is understandable on the face of it, but what is 
not clear is why it is being done with continual cuts. It is especially 
curious given that their factory is determined as “strategic,” and the 
Ministry of Defense wants to keep it afloat in case it must produce 
ammunition in an emergency.

There is no reasonable answer to the question of why gunpowder is being 
procured in China while the MoD continues to pay IMI salaries.

Shortening Service

Lastly, the shortening of military service for men in homefront positions, 
which a public committee is about to recommend, is another result that was 
known of in advance, but could have been reached a long time ago. It’s no 
secret that the IDF supports a plan to shorten service for men by four 
months and provide salaries during the final four months of service to 
combat soldiers that continue serving for three years. The very same 
recommendation was already published by IsraelDefense about three months 
ago, and was based on plans that the IDF was preparing for in advance.

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