IDF chief Halevi admits military failed to prevent Hamas attack, vows probe
In his first public statement since the Israel-Palestine conflict began, IDF chief of staff Herzi Halevi acknowledges the IDF didn't handle the situation in the Gaza border area
In his first public statement since the conflict between Israel and Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip began, Israel Defence Forces (IDF) chief of staff lieutenant general Herzi Halevi acknowledged failures that enabled "infiltration and mass murders" by Hamas last week, media reports said.
"The IDF is responsible for the security of the country and its citizens, and on Saturday morning in the area surrounding the Gaza Strip, we did not handle it. We will learn, we will investigate, but now is the time for war," Halevi said from southern Israel.
He added that Israel will do everything it can to rescue the Israeli hostages taken by Hamas and other groups, the Times of Israel reported.
"We are five days after a murderous, brutal and surprising incident. The slaughter by the murderous Hamas terrorists, the human animals, of our children, our wives and our people, is animalistic, it is inhumane. The IDF is fighting merciless terrorists who have committed unimaginable acts.
"Yahya Sinwar, the ruler of the Gaza Strip, decided on this horrible attack, and therefore he and the entire system under him are dead men. We will attack them, we will dismantle them, dismantle their system," he said.
Halevi added that a time will come to investigate how Hamas managed to carry out the attack, Times of Israel reported.
On the estimated 200 Israelis and foreigners held captive by the militant group in the Gaza Strip, Halevi said: "We will do everything to return the hostages back home. We are killing many terrorists, many commanders, destroying terror infrastructure that supported this terrible, brutal crime. Gaza will not look the same."