IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz said in a special interview with Yedioth Ahronoth ahead of the Yom Kippur holiday, “I ask myself if things could have been done differently during the war, and if so – how. I ask myself whether we chose the correct operational approach; whether the decision-making process was right.”
Halutz spoke of his personal distress over the kidnapping of the IDF soldiers in Lebanon
on July 12.
“I ask myself how the gap between the expectations and reality was created,” he said regarding the public’s attitude toward the army’s achievements on the ground.
“This gap was the reason for the disappointment.”
Halutz admitted that not all went according to plan during the war.
“Mediocre is mediocre,” he said. “This means that some things were good and others were not so good. And there were bad things; in every aspect.”
Halutz continued: “If there was something that preoccupied me throughout the war against Hizbullah, it was human life. When I hear of a fallen soldier it touches me deeply. This is the most difficult time of my life. It’s not how I appear on the outside, but how I feel on the inside.
“I’m having a hard time with everything – with the price of the war; I cannot compare it to anything I’ve experienced in the past,” the chief of staff said.
Halutz said during the interview that he takes full responsibility “for everything that happened in the army,” but stressed that he would not step down yet, adding that some of the criticism directed towards him during and after the war was ‘blown out of proportion.’
“I will wait patiently for the conclusion of the investigations,” he said. “If the findings show that I had failed, then it will be the first thing I'd do (step down).”