Saturday, January 12, 2008
"12/01/2008 The Second Lebanon War would have ended differently if "the defense establishment would have called up reserve forces and used them as it should have, just like in operation Defensive Shield," Israeli occupation Transportation Minister Shaul Mofaz said Saturday. "Hezbollah today is stronger than what it was before the war and it has a larger rocket arsenal…it does not fulfill any clause in Resolution 1701. Resolution 1701 is not worth the paper it's written on, "Mofaz said.
The main problem encountered by Israel in the Lebanon War was the political leadership's failed management of the campaign, Mofaz added. "This is the same army and same commanders who fought in operation Defensive Shield four years earlier, and there we won."
In a session organized by the Geneva Initiative organization, Mofaz argued that there is no connection between the results of the war and the security activity undertaken in the past six years, during which he served as chief of staff and as defense minister. "The management of the Second Lebanon War was confused and unsuccessful... In the six years before the war, I wouldn't have done anything differently. Until the war, we fought on the Palestinian front to prevent attacks, and I wouldn't have launched an additional front in Lebanon," he said.
Mofaz made the comments ahead of the publication of the second part of the Winograd report, against a backdrop of growing calls to topple Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert should the report harshly criticize the PM's conduct during the war.
Interim PA State before Final Accord
Regarding the Palestinian issue, Mofaz said Israel should reach an agreement with the Palestinian Authority on an interim state before signing a final settlement deal. He said that the interim deal should grant provisional Palestinian state temporary borders, and should not include a settlement on two of the core issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: the fate of Jerusalem and the Palestinian refugees."