Israeli military intelligence chief steps down over failure to predict Oct. 7 attack

Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliva is 1st senior official to resign for failure in dealing with Hamas attack

12:15 - 22/04/2024 Monday
File photo
File photo

The head of the Israeli army's Military Intelligence Directorate, Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliva, has resigned over his failure to predict the Hamas Oct. 7 attack, the Israeli media reported on Monday.

Haliva has decided to retire from the Israeli army due to his failure to predict the Oct. 7 attack, Israeli Army Radio said in a statement.

In his resignation letter addressed to Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Hertzl Halevi, Haliva reportedly stated: “With authority comes heavy responsibility. The intelligence division under my leadership did not meet its mission requirements.”

He added: “I bore that black day with courage. Since then, day and night, I will forever carry the pains of the terrible war,” the radio reported.

Following his announcement, the army said in a statement that Haliva has retired, stating: “In collaboration with the chief of staff and with the approval of the minister of defense, Maj. Gen. Aharon Haliva will conclude his service and retire from the IDF (army) after the appointment of his successor through a meticulous and professional selection process,” Israeli daily The Jerusalem Post reported.

This marks the first official resignation of a senior leader in Israel, particularly within the military, amid the ongoing demands within Israeli society to hold military and political officials accountable for the failure to detect and respond to the surprise attack carried out by Hamas over six months ago.

Israel has pounded the Gaza Strip since the cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas on Oct. 7 last year, which Tel Aviv says killed nearly 1,200 people.

At least 34,097 Palestinians have been killed, mostly women and children, and 76,980 injured since then, according to Palestinian health authorities.

The Israeli war on Gaza has pushed 85% of the territory's population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

Hostilities have continued unabated, however, and aid deliveries remain woefully insufficient to address the humanitarian catastrophe.

*Writing by Mohammad Sio in Istanbul

#Aharon Haliva
#Israeli army
#Oct 7 attacks
1 month ago