Unlearned lessons from the Gaza War

MK Ofer Shelah defends Knesset report he led on 2014 Gaza War as ‘completely professional,’ not political.

MK Ofer Shelah is worried about history repeating itself – again – but his warning is being drowned out by political controversy.

Shelah leads the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Subcommittee on Building Defense Strategy and Power, which drafted a report following up on how the IDF is implementing its five-year “Gideon” plan, two years in. The subcommittee held more than 30 meetings and site visits in 2015 and 2016 to examine the plan’s implementation at all levels of the IDF.

It sounds straightforward enough, but while the classified version of the report focuses more on the IDF, the parts that could be made public highlight a shortcoming on the political, not the military, level.

The problem, Shelah explained on Thursday, is that the government hasn’t set any strategic goals for the security forces, and in a democracy, the military is supposed to follow the government’s instructions, not its own.

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