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Netanyahu apologizes for blaming Israeli security chiefs for Hamas attack | Benjamin Netanyahu News

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Israeli Prime Minister deletes post blaming responsibility for October 7 attack on intelligence services.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apologized for a message in which he accused the country’s security services of failing to anticipate the Hamas attack on October 7, saying he was “wrong” to make such comments at a time when unity is paramount.

In a social media post Saturday evening, Netanyahu lashed out at his own intelligence services, saying they had failed to warn him of an imminent Hamas attack and instead assured him that the group was “dissuaded”.

“At no time and at no time was any warning given to Prime Minister Netanyahu regarding Hamas’ war intentions,” Netanyahu wrote in the now-deleted post on X, formerly Twitter. “On the contrary, all security officials, including the head of military intelligence and the head of the Shin Bet, believed that Hamas was deterred and interested in a settlement. »

“Leaders demonstrate responsibility”

The remarks quickly drew sharp rebukes from other Israeli leaders, including Netanyahu’s allies, who said now was the time to unite rather than point fingers.

“When we are at war, leaders must show responsibility, decide to do the right things and strengthen the forces,” said Benny Gantz, a former defense minister who joined Netanyahu’s war cabinet after the attack .

“Any other action or statement undermines the people’s ability to stand and their strength. The Prime Minister must withdraw his statement.

Yair Lapid, opposition leader and former prime minister, accused Netanyahu of crossing “a red line” and undermining the military.

Netanyahu quickly deleted the controversial post and apologized for undermining his security services in a subsequent statement, guaranteeing they had his “full support.”

“The things I said…should not have been said and I apologize for that,” Netanyahu wrote on . »

While Israeli military and intelligence chiefs acknowledged their shortcomings before the attack, Netanyahu shirked responsibility, creating a growing rift between him and the departments.

Netanyahu said it would be time to ask tough questions, including of himself, after the war.

Netanyahu’s response added to public concerns that he is prioritizing his political interests over national security as he fights a corruption trial that could threaten his power.

“(Netanyahu) is not interested in security, he is not interested in hostages, only in politics,” opposition lawmaker Avigdor Lieberman, Netanyahu’s former defense minister, said in an interview with the radio.

Al Jazeera correspondent Sara Khairat said Netanyahu’s public “war of words” with his cabinet comes as he faces increasing criticism for not acknowledging the government’s failures.

“Interestingly, (Netanyahu) has apologized for the tweets… but has yet, despite criticism, apologized or taken responsibility for failing to prevent the attack, at a time when the unity government is supposed to be united. » Khairat said from the occupied West Bank.

“Second phase” of the war

The public clash between Netanyahu and his intelligence units comes as Israel begins what it has called the “second phase” of its war in the Gaza Strip, with new ground incursions adding to relentless aerial bombardments.

“We are only at the beginning,” Netanyahu said at a news conference. “We will destroy the enemy above and below ground. »

Israel has been striking Gaza for three weeks in response to a surprise Hamas attack on Israeli territory that killed 1,400 Israelis, most of them civilians. Israeli airstrikes have killed 8,000 Palestinians, mostly civilians and many children, and decimated much of the enclave’s infrastructure.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Sunday renewed calls for a “humanitarian pause” in the war, saying the situation in Gaza was becoming “more desperate by the hour.”

Thousands of Palestinians stormed United Nations warehouses on Sunday to obtain food and basic necessities in a sign of desperation. Israel said it would allow more aid trucks into the Palestinian enclave.

Gn world

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