Defense Minister Cancels Annual Home Front Defense Drill

Security official says cancelation is 'first step to near complete cessation of IDF drills due to budgetary constraints.'

Gili Cohen
Gili Cohen
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Medics take part in a Home Front Command drill.
Medics take part in a Home Front Command drill.Credit: Daniel Tchetchik
Gili Cohen
Gili Cohen

Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon and Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz canceled Thursday a home front drill slated for next month due to budgetary considerations, an official in the security establishment said.

"Postponing the drill is the first step on the way to a near complete cessation of drills in the IDF and in the security establishment due to budget constraints," the official said.

"This isn't a game and we're not fear-mongering. This is just the reality. The security establishment and the IDF have run out of funds, and we're stopping the activity. As a result we'll witness a dramatic drop in capabilities and readiness, not only on the home front but in other sectors, including in the regular combat units and in the reserves."

On Wednesday, Minister Ya'alon warned the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Security Committee that the security establishment is in a "budgetary crisis." The meeting also raised for the first time the possibility of putting an end to army drills.

The "Turning Point 8" home front drill takes place every year, with the participation of various authorities, including home front command, government offices, local authorities, the education establishment and emergency and rescue services.

So far no new date for the drill has been scheduled.

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