Editor: Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld, President, American Center for Democracy (ACD)
QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
While Israel is focusing on winning the war against Hamas, some are assigning the blame for the October 7 attack to Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu without waiting for a formal commission of inquiry, which would probably take more than one year.
Save the West thinks examining the roles played by several major Israeli actors involved would be useful. The “Captain of the Ship” is always blamed for major failures, but in this case, the judiciary, mostly the Supreme Court, should be blamed because it usurped the power of the Prime Minister.
Israel’s Attorney General (AG) is recommended for the job by the Minister of Justice and approved by the government. For decades, the AG did not merely advise the Prime Minister and different ministries, but made decisions controlling and frequently contradicted the executive branch, often siding with the Arab population. The AG even interfered with the PM’s pick for the IDF Chief of Staff.
The key government officials responsible for the lack of preparedness on October 7 are as follows:
1) The Judiciary, primarily the Attorney General and the Supreme Court, which has effectively managed Israel since Aharon Barak served as Chief Justice in 1995. During the past 30 years, the Supreme Court has given itself more and more power that extends even to vetoing the selection of future court justices. It even insists that it has the right to overturn decisions by the elected Knesset.
The AG has not merely advised the Prime Minister and different ministries, but has made decisions controlling and often contradicting the executive branch, often siding with the Arab population. The judiciary allowed then-Prime Minister Lapid to give away off-shore land to Lebanon/Hezbollah without the Knesset’s authorization. In the previous Bennett government, the AG allowed the Muslim Brotherhood Ra’am party, which denies Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish State, to join the ruling coalition. Most disturbingly, the AG has been involved in illegal attempts to remove the elected government of PM Netanyahu from power.
2) The Yesh Atid opposition party, led by Yair Lapid, severely distracted the Netanyahu government by deceptively exaggerating the danger of judicial reform.
3) The major Israeli newspapers, television, and radio channels that have been serving the opposition parties, spreading judicial reform disinformation to deceive the public in an effort to oust the coalition government headed by Netanyahu.
4) Israeli military intelligence, known as Aman, headed by Major General Aharon Haliva, who is directly responsible for identifying threats posed by Israel’s numerous enemies, but failed. Aman failed to recognize and stop the Hamas October 7 attacks.
5) All Prime Ministers, Defense Ministers, and IDF Chiefs of Staff who, for the past 57 years since the 1967 Six Day War, did not take advantage of that victory to further Israel’s national security. Instead of using strategies to intimidate Israel’s enemies, they all tried to befriend them.
6) All Finance Ministers who, for the past 57 years have refused to allocate sufficient resources to the IDF and other national security ministries and agencies.
7) All current and historical Knesset members, who failed in the past 57 years to secure and properly protect the lives and well-being of the Israeli population, especially on the borders.
8) All Education ministers, who have failed to insist on mandatory teaching of the Bible, Jewish history, and civics in Israeli elementary and high schools.
10) Prime Minister Netanyahu was unable to recover from the systemic failure of those surrounding him and advising him. In retrospect, he should have appointed a trustworthy and strong deputy Prime Minister and another reliable deputy to coordinate all activities and programs to keep the PM informed of the massive complacency throughout the government, the intelligence services, and the military.
This inadequate situation led to underestimating the enemies and their threat and to the systemic failure of the government to protect the population. We hope that the lessons of this catastrophe will guarantee that no future Israeli government will ever make similar simultaneous mistakes of this magnitude again.