Former ISA Chief Comes to Bennett’s Defense


benFormer ISA (Israel Security Agency – Shin Bet) Director Yuval Diskin on Wednesday 22 Elul published an article criticizing the handing of Operation Protective Edge by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon. In his capacity as a former senior intelligence community chief, Diskin is not a stranger to cabinet briefings on security matters.

Just a day after harsh public criticism was directed at Bayit Yehudi party leader Economy Minister Naftali Bennett, and the formal dismissal of IDF reservist Brigadier-General Rabbi Avichai Ronsky from the military, Diskin comes to Bennett’s defense. Diskin not only feels Bennett did not act inappropriately, but praises his actions during Operation Protective Edge.

Bennett was praised by Diskin for heading down to the south and getting a close-up understanding of what was taking place in the warfare. Diskin explains Bennett chose not to rely on the limited updates received in cabinet briefings but to go see for himself. “He familiarized himself with the events and even challenged the prime minister and defense minister at cabinet sessions” praises Diskin, lauding Bennett’s actions during the warfare. He credits Bennett’s tenacity, which Diskin insists led to the in-depth discussion regarding the terror tunnels and their eventual elimination.

Diskin says it is entirely possible that if not for Bennett, the prime minister and defense minister would have opted to keep ministers in the dark and the ground forces operation may never have been launched. Diskin questions why the two senior ministers who knew about the tunnels early on into the warfare opted to keep the Security Cabinet in the dark.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)