IDF faces near-shutdown come April 1

Due to cuts to defense budget, Gantz tells officers they'll need to reduce training exercises at start of April.

By
February 7, 2012 19:33
2 minute read.
IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz

IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz_390. (photo credit: Ori Shifrin/IDF Spokesman)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz has ordered unit commanders to begin preparing for a near-shutdown of the military in two months due to a continued standoff with the Treasury over the defense budget.

On Monday, Gantz and Deputy Chief of Staff Maj.- Gen. Yair Naveh convened the top IDF brass – officers with the rank of colonel and higher – for an annual gathering to discuss Israel’s strategic challenges for the coming year.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


During the meeting, Gantz told the hundreds of officers who were present they would need to cut back on training exercises starting April 1. In addition, the IDF was planning a major cutback in reservist training over the next year.

“We are cancelling all kinds of exercises, from the division level down to the battalion level,” a senior IDF officer who was at the meeting said on Tuesday. “We will not be able to call up reserves, and even when we hold exercises we will be limited in the amount of ammunition we can use.”

Last month, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu decided not to cut the defense budget, and even agreed to a one-time supplement of NIS 3 billion. Nevertheless, the IDF claims it is short NIS 4b., and will need to dramatically cut back on training and ammunition in order to fund new development and procurement programs.

In addition to the possible stop in training, the Defense Ministry has decided to suspend all future orders of Merkava tanks and Namer armored personnel carriers (APC).

“There are a number of strategic projects that will be harmed due to the lack of funds,” a defense official said Tuesday.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


The Namer is based on the Merkava MK4 and is claimed to have a high level of reinforced steel protection. The decision to develop the new APC was made after the Second Lebanon War in 2006, during which IDF armor suffered heavy losses to Hezbollah anti-tank missiles.

Other projects that could be affected are the Iron Dome antirocket defense system and further development of David’s Sling and Arrow-3, two longer-ranged missile defense systems.

The officials said Gantz and Defense Ministry director-general Udi Shani were scheduled to meet with Netanyahu in the coming weeks in an effort to obtain additional funding that would enable the military to continue implementing its multi-year procurement plan.

Called Halamish, the plan is aimed at upgrading the IDF’s ground forces, improving its strategic capabilities with the procurement of additional F-35 stealth fighter jets, and boosting Israel’s cyber capabilities.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

idf hebron
August 22, 2014
Palestinians throw Molotov cocktail at IDF checkpoint in Hebron

By KHALED ABU TOAMEH, TOVAH LAZAROFF