IDF intelligence criticized at ICT

Army was ready to deal with "symptoms" not "root causes" of Hizbullah's actions.

IDF intelligence prior to the war in Lebanon was functioning at a high level, according to former Head of the Research Division in the army's Intelligence Branch, Brig.-Gen. (Res.) Yossi Kupperwaser. Kupperwaser made his comments at the sixth annual International Conference on Global Terrorism in Herzliya, at The Institute for Counterterrorism's International Conference at IDC Herzlya, on September 11-14, 2006. He said that on a strategic and operational level Israel had the intelligence needed, but what the IDF had essentially lacked was intelligence at a tactical level. Kupperwaser added that the IDF must tactically reevaluate the information available to the military and examine the differences between what was known and what was later discovered. Maj. -Gen. (Res.) Uri Saguy, a former Intelligence Chief who also spoke at the conference, said that Israel was not prepared for the war. "Ground forces were neither ready nor sufficiently trained. They did not even recognize their goals," Saguy said. He reiterated that the IDF was prepared to deal with the "symptoms" but not the "root causes" of Hizbullah's actions. Although Hizbullah failed to assess the magnitude of Israel's response, they were ready for Israel's retaliation nonetheless, added Saguy. The ex-intelligence chief also pointed out that Israel was not adequately prepared for the potential situation of Syria entering into the picture, saying that although such an event had not occurred, had the Syrians decided to participate in an attack on Israel, results would have been disastrous. Saguy mentioned that there was a huge gap between the public's expectations of the IDF and the ability of the military.