Defense Minister Ehud Barak addressed the social protests gripping the country on Tuesday during a visit to a navy base. "The social protest is an important and exciting phenomenon that has led us into a new discussion."
The protest's "demands for a change in priorities including [economic] inequality are vary important," the defense minister said.
"Those on [Rothschild Boulevard], including the heads of students groups and youth groups... people who work and who carry the tax burden, these are the same people that in an emergency situation would fold up their tents and immediately head to reserve military service. We need to be aware of and appreciative of them."
However, Barak added, the world and our region are in the middle of an economic storm, pointing to the troubles of countries like Spain and Greece, while noting possible security threats in the region and from Iran. For those reasons, he said, "We must act responsibly and decisively."