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Thu. Sep 15, 2016 News from Israel

  • Ehud Barak harshly criticizes Netanyahu following signed US military aid deal
  • Home front command prepares for National drill testing country’s levels of preparedness for worst-case scenarios
  • Former president Peres' condition remains serious but stable

Former Israeli prime minister and defense minister Ehud Barak, who recently harshly criticized Netanyahu, published an op-ed Wednesday in the Washington Post titled: Netanyahu’s reckless conduct endangers Israel. “Netanyahu’s reckless conduct has also undermined Israel’s security." The timing of the op-ed, which coincides with the signing of the US military aid package for Israel, does not appear to be accidental. “Israel will receive $3.8 billion a year — an important contribution to our security but far less than what could have been obtained before the Prime Minister chose to blatantly interfere with U.S. politics.” In response to the editorial, the Likud said that Barak’s claims are nonsense. “They were written by the most failed prime minister in Israel’s history.” The Likud also stated that Barak is attempting to make a “pathetic comeback.”

In an exclusive interview for channel 2 news US ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro said that the new US aid military deal which was increased by 8 billion dollars – the largest defense package to any country in US history -indicated how serious is the level of the US commitment to Israel's security. Shapiro reiterated what US president Obama said following the signing of the deal that the deal would help Israel to defend itself but that long term security could only be achieved with a two state solution.

 

Next week, Israel’s National Home Front Command drill will take place, at the height of which an alarm will sound off across the country on Tuesday and residents will be asked to enter the security room in their building. The extensive drill will be held by the IDF together with Israel’s Home Front Command and will include a war scenario on several fronts, massive rocket attacks on Israel, the harming of essential infrastructure facilities, the collapse of Israel’s electricity and communications network and cyber-attacks. According to the Home Front Command’s estimations, Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Hamas have a total of 230 thousand rockets of various ranges. In the worst-case scenario where Israel will be attacked simultaneously on all fronts, 1,500 rockets will be fired at Israel every day, 95% of which are short-range. Taking into account the abilities of the Iron Dome air defense system and the rockets’ precision, the Home Front Command estimates that only 1% of the rockets will directly hit buildings.  



The medical situation of Israel’s 9th President Shimon Peres continued Thursday to be serious but stable after he was admitted two days ago to Tel HaShomer Hospital due to a severe stroke. “There is no change in his situation and he continues to receive the treatment his doctors ordered,” Peres’ office stated. According to the medical team the former prime minister is still sedated and on a respirator and that when there is a letup of the anesthetic drugs, Peres is responsive.

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