'Volunteers are answer to draft-dodgers'

Barak: No one is unable to serve in IDF; Ashkenazi: War heroes are remedy for phenomenon.

October 1, 2007 13:03
'Volunteers are answer to draft-dodgers'

IDF troops 224.88. (photo credit: AP [file])

Defense Minister Ehud Barak said on Monday that there was no one unable to serve in the IDF, Army Radio reported. "Volunteers are the answer to the embarrassing phenomenon called draft-dodging," Barak said at a ceremony honoring IDF volunteers, held at the defense minister's succa in the Tel Aviv military headquarters. Barak emphasized that the Defense Ministry would fight with all its might against this phenomenon. IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi expressed similar sentiments at an honors ceremony for soldiers who fought in the Second Lebanon War. Shaking the hands of the war heroes, Ashkenazi said those in the hall were a remedy for draft-dodging. "You will answer the draft-dodgers," he said. "You are the heroes of the people and the land - you are the best of the nation." President Shimon Peres, meanwhile, said at a memorial ceremony at Emek Yizrael that "those who avoid duty are not [even] giving the little that is required [to sustain] our existence."

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