“There will no longer be a situation where war is waged on an unknown, distant battlefield, while life continues as usual in the large cities. The war will also reach the cities and homes of Israel’s citizens, and our enemies’ objective will be to target the home front,” warned Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, during a tour of the Israel Army’s “Home Front Command” base on Tuesday.
Mr Olmert, who was accompanied by Deputy Defense Minister Matan Vilnai, Israeli army Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi and OC Home Front Command Maj. Gen. Yair Golan, examined in his visit the application of lessons learned from the Second Lebanon War regarding treatment of the home front.
“The wars of the future, if such wars should break out, heaven forbid, will be completely different from the wars of the past, even the Second Lebanon War,” the prime minister said. “Our enemies are acquiring weapons intended to target the population. The role of the Home Front Command in such a scenario will be more central than ever in Israel’s wars.”
Mr. Olmert was given a briefing dealing with the threats to the Israeli home front, the existing responses, and the deployment of the forces and operating methods. The prime minister also observed a Home Front Command exercise and heard briefings on the various unique measures employed by the Home Front Command. Mr. Olmert said that the briefing he was given showed him an encouraging picture of what has happened in the home front during the two years since the Second Lebanon War.
“The State of Israel, for its part, will not seek to take control of territories in order to hold them, and will focus on preventing its borders from being breached, and on a quick and conclusive victory of the campaign,” said the prime minister. “In the Second Lebanon War we had much more massive weapons and capabilities that we refrained from using because we were fighting a terror organization and not a state.
“If Lebanon should turn into a Hezbollah [-controlled] state, then we will have no limitations in this context. The same applies to any country that will want to attack us. Our task will be to bring about a quick victory, at a minimal cost, while utilizing our relative advantages.”
David Bedein can be reached at email@example.com. His Web site is www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com.
©The Bulletin 2008