Gabi Ashkenazi with Binyamin Netanyahu 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS/POOL New)
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak ordered the
IDF to raise its alert level ahead of a possible attack on Iranian nuclear
facilities in 2010, a move which drew virulent objections from both the IDF and
Mossad chiefs, according to a Channel 2 investigative report previewed on Sunday
During a meeting of select senior ministers in 2010, Netanyahu
allegedly ordered the IDF to raise its state of alert to “P-plus,” reserved for
an imminent state of war, according to the report.
Then-IDF chief of
staff Gabi Ashkenazi and then-Mossad chief Meir Dagan considered the order
“illegal” and resisted it.
“This is not something you do unless you’re
certain you want to see it through,” Channel 2 quoted Ashkenazi as
The report cited “sources close to Ashkenazi” as explaining that
such a move would create “facts on the ground” that invariably would lead to
Citing a number of people present at the meeting, Dagan stated
unequivocally that such a move would be “illegal,” adding that it would require
The report quoted him as saying after the meeting that
“the prime minister and defense minister are simply trying to steal a
In an interview broadcast Thursday on Channel 2, Barak accused
Ashkenazi of not having adequately prepared the military for such a scenario, revealing a serious rift between Israel’s political and military
Barak also denied the claim made by both Ashkenazi and Dagan
that the command would necessarily have led Israel to war with Iran.
chief of staff must create the operational capacity. He must provide his
professional recommendation on whether or not to enact a given order, and we
must even take this opinion into account. But we can also proceed in opposition
to his recommendation,” Barak said.Yaakov Lappin contributed to this report