April 22, 2024 | Flash Brief

IDF Intel Chief Resigns Over Hamas’s October 7 Attacks

April 22, 2024 | Flash Brief

IDF Intel Chief Resigns Over Hamas’s October 7 Attacks

Latest Developments

The commander of Israeli military intelligence tendered his resignation on April 22, citing his responsibility for the failure to anticipate the Hamas rampage that triggered the Gaza war. In a resignation letter made public by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliva said that soon after Hamas’s October 7 murder and kidnapping spree in southern Israel, he had made clear his intention to step down. He added that with the war more than half a year old and IDF internal investigations underway, it was time to go.

“I carry that black day with me every since, day after day, night after night. I will carry the pain with me forever,” Haliva said. The general said he would stay on while the IDF installs his successor and will submit his own testimony for the investigation into Israel’s most significant intelligence failure in 50 years. He called for a state commission of inquiry to be appointed to thoroughly examine what led to the October 7 debacle.

Expert Analysis

“In the first weeks of the war after the October 7 attacks, Haliva was among the first Israeli officials to acknowledge culpability for what started it — a belief that Hamas’s capacity for extreme, bloody-minded violence could be deterred by high walls and limited operations. He is also the first to resign and will assuredly not be the last. And there is strength in that: A country whose leaders are willing to pay the personal price of failure is a country that can turn disgrace into a chance to learn, improve, and rebuild.” — Mark Dubowitz, FDD CEO

“October 7 resulted from a massive failure of intelligence and inability to understand the enemy and its intentions. Getting this right fell in large part to Israel’s military intelligence and its head, Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliva. It is a testament to his leadership that he is accepting responsibility and resigning, and also a reminder that the source of Israel’s strength and durability is that it is a country that learns — including from its mistakes.” David Daoud, FDD Senior Fellow

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