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NEWS & COMMENTARY 2008 SPEAKERS 2007 2006 2005

Monday, September 18, 2006

'We didn't know enough about Hizbullah'

"We did not know enough about Hizbullah's deployment in south Lebanon," a senior IDF officer said on Monday.

The officer added that the war revealed a number of shortcomings regarding the handling of ground intelligence. He said that a lack of coordination between the air force and ground troops weakened the ability of IAF pilots to come to the aid of soldiers on the ground.

"While the pilots had intelligence information that was updated in 2006, ground forces used intelligence from 2000 - I am not singling anybody out for blame, but there is no doubt that presented problems," he said.

The officer also spoke of rescuing the wounded from combat zones during the war. The air force performed 110 rescue sorties, 59 in Lebanese territory, rescuing 350 soldiers.

The officer commended two rescue operations carried out under fire and the difficult commando operations in Baalbek and in Tyre.

The officer also claimed that the drone which was launched by Hizbullah during the war in Lebanon, and which was shot down in the area of Haifa, was intended to strike the Gush Dan region, Army Radio reported.

"We found in the wings of the drone 10 kilograms of explosives, with ball-bearings packed inside," the officer said.

"We are talking here about a very accurate machine. In the past there have been attempts by Hizbullah to infiltrate Israeli airspace with drones fitted with video cameras, but never drones armed with explosives."

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