Comptroller Releases Scathing Report on IDF Appointments

State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss describes the current process of appointing major generals as 'negotiations between the chief of staff and defense minister.'

State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss released a scathing report Tuesday on the appointments process in the highest ranks of the Israel Defense Forces, describing the current process as "negotiations between the chief of staff and defense minister."

Micha Lindenstrauss - Emil Salman
Emil Salman

In his report, Lindenstrauss recommends an immediate overhaul of the process for promoting IDF officers to the rank of major-general.

The current procedure is nothing but negotiations between the chief of staff and the defense minister, wrote Lindenstrauss in his report, adding that the process is not "anchored on rules and accepted regulations, is not based on uniform data and is not documented."

The comptroller also suggested that the Mossad intelligence agency and Shin Bet Security Service also adopt the procedural changes for appointments that the IDF makes in the wake of his report.

The comptroller's report, which was prepared by the comptroller's office defense division, led by Maj. Gen (res. ) Yaakov Or, focuses on two aspects of the process: appointments of officers to ranks between lieutenant colonel and brigadier general, and the appointments of new major generals.

The report does not comment on appointments of chiefs of staff.

Since the Second Lebanon War, the army has made considerable efforts to improve the appointments process among the top brass. But much of the improvement appears to be contained to ranks below the level of major general.

The recurring clashes between Defense Minister Ehud Barak and IDF Chief of Staff Ashkenazi over the appointments of major generals seem to indicate that the appointments process is yet to be formalized and assigned clear guidelines.

Currently there are no external monitoring rules for the appointments of major generals; rather, the entire process takes place between the chief of staff and the defense minister.