Prime Minister Ehud Olmert directed his associates "not to attack the army" upon the upcoming publication of the Winograd Commission's interim report on the failures of the Second War in Lebanon.
"It is everyone's army," Olmert said, adding that officials should neither criticize the Winograd Commission or its members.
Although Olmert's associates and government ministers are trying to maintain a "business as usual" front, the Prime Minister's Office held a series of meetings to prepare for the report's impending publication, this Monday at 5 pm.
The Office staff is fully aware of that the report and its upshots will significantly effect the continuation of Olmert's role as prime minister and his performance as such. At this stage, however, it has not yet been decided whether Olmert will officially accept the commission's conclusions.
"The prime minister cannot say ahead of time that he accepts all of the Winograd Commission's conclusions," a senior PMO official told Ynet. "We can't know what the conclusions are going to be. The prime minister does not need to accept every conclusion – he does need to offer his neck up for the rope.
"However, the prime minister has made two decisions: The first is that no one is going to attack the IDF in response to the report. The people's army is the only army we have.
"The second decision is that no one from the Prime Minister's Office will attack the Winograd Commission or its members. We must remember that the members of the commission were appointed by the prime minister. They are respectable people, who have been through a difficult time. We will maintain an official line in this matter," he said.
Defense Minister Amir Peretz's office is preparing for the fateful day as well. Peretz himself assessed that he would not be damaged by the report.
Attila Somfalvi contributed to the report