Winograd: Political and Military Failure in Israel during the war on Lebanon
Thursday January 31, 2008 22:31 by Ghassan Bannoura - IMEMC News
Israeli media sources reported on Thursday that the Israeli Prime Minister Ehod Olmert felt relief by the final Winograd Committee report on the Second Israeli war on Lebanon.
Retired Judge Eliyahu Winograd, who was appointed by the Israeli Parliament to investigate the failures of Israel during its war on Lebanon in the summer of 2006, issued his report on Wednesday. The report stated that there was dangerous political and military failures in managing the war, the report also noted that the war failed and did not accomplish any of its objectives.
Israeli troops invaded southern Lebanon in July 2006, after claiming that the Lebanese group Hezbollah abducted two Israeli soldiers across the border. The Israeli invasion resulted in the deaths of over 1200 Lebanese people, over 1000 of whom were civilians, while about 100 Israelis died in the war among them 40 civilians and 60 Soldiers.
Israel said that the War was to retrieve the two abducted Israeli soldiers and destroy the fighting ability of Hezbollah. Non of those objectives were accomplished according to the Winograd Committee report.
On Wednesday Winograd said his report should be used learn form the past mistakes and to build on it. On Thursday the Israeli PM Olmert said that the Winograd report freed him from his guilt that he felt because of his decision to send more invading troops into Lebanon in the last two days of the war.
Sources in Olmert office told Israeli news agencies that the PM "shed tears" when he read the section of the report that deals with the Israeli troops conduct during the ground offensive in the war. Meanwhile the ex-Israeli Defense Minister, who was still in his post during the war, Amir Peretz, said Thursday that he agrees with Winograds report that the war was a missed opportunity, however is said that the decision to attack Lebanon was correct.
The Winograd reports published on Wednesday stated clearly that Israel did not use its armed forces correctly during the war, in addition the report shows that Israel did not have an effective and organized process of decision making during the war.
The report finished by urging Israel to make a dramatic change in the process of taking decisions in both the political and in the military levels and to find new systems to enhance strategic planning in the security and political levels.