(photo credit: Reuters)
As a country faced with nonstop war and terror since its inception, Israel
naturally accords great respect to the views of its defense professionals.
Granted, many have seen their luster as defense experts dim after entering
politics, where their performance received more scrutiny than the shadows of the
defense establishment allow. Ehud Barak and Moshe Dayan, for instance, were both
IDF chiefs of staff, yet the former’s handling of the second intifada as prime
minister was universally panned, as was the latter’s performance as defense
minister during the Yom Kippur War. Former air force commander Ezer Weizman
opposed attacking Iraq’s nuclear reactor as defense minister, yet the 1981
airstrike succeeded brilliantly. Mossad veteran Tzipi Livni boasted of crafting
UN Security Council Resolution 1701 to end the Second Lebanon War as foreign
minister in 2006, yet this resolution enabled Hezbollah to rearm so quickly that
by 2009, it had three times as many rockets as it did before the war.