Gov't watchdog slams Olmert over Lebanon war

Wednesday, July 18, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

Israeli State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss harshly criticized the national and military leadership in a comprehensive report released on Wednesday on the preparedness and functioning of the home front during last summer's war with Hizballah.

“Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, former defense minister Amir Peretz, government ministers, former chief of staff Dan Halutz and Home Front Command chief Major-General Yitzhak Gershon each failed severely in the processes of decision making, evaluation and estimation in their handling of the Home Front during the Second Lebanon War,” read the report.

Olmert in particular has been repeatedly taken to task for declaring ambitious war goals and then not letting the army achieve them, as well as failing to adequately care for the resident of northern Israel as they were pelted with over 4,000 missiles during the 34-day conflict. But each time, Olmert has brushed off the criticism, insisting that while his government made some mistakes, its war-time decisions in general were correct and effective.

The prime minister's response to the Lindenstrauss report was no different. Olmert accused the comptroller of having a personal vendetta against him, and insisted that the investigation had focused on secondary and irrelevant issues.

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