IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi sent out a message to all the IDF’s commanders and soldiers in the regular army and the reserves (translated below).
The letter was in response to the growing number of reservists who are refusing to show up for duty, especially among the pilots.
The letter was sent out the day after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fired Defense Minister Gallant, ostensibly for not nipping in the bud the growing number of reservists refusing to show up for duty, but also due to Gallant backstabbing Netanyahu while Netanyahu was away in London. Halevi may have understood the underlying message that he needs to speak up and take some steps to stop the unprecedented growing epidemic happening under his command.
To the commanders of the IDF and its regular and reserve soldiers,
Complex days are passing through Israeli society. From every side and from every direction, it is impossible not to be concerned about what is happening.
We knew wars, we knew pain, we knew determined fighting against our enemies.
This is a different hour than any we have known before. We have not known such days of coalescing threats from outside with a storm at home.
I turn to you in this time of trial: this is a time of responsibility.
Our mission is to protect the house against the growing threats from the outside. We know them well and understand that it is time to show responsibility. Let our enemies know that we are all on our guard and no one abandons us.
The resilience, the personal responsibility, the cohesion of the ranks and the bad, are what will stand us this time as well, when we face the great defense and security tasks ahead.
The IDF has always acted according to the values of the IDF and the spirit of the IDF, a seventy-five-year-old compass, by the light of which we walked even in the darkest hours and darkest days. It will be the same in the future.
I, along with the commanders, along the entire length of the chain of command, will lead the IDF and you also in these difficult days. I am responsible that every task entrusted to you will be a task of protecting the security of the State of Israel and its citizens, and will uphold the values of the IDF.
And you, each one on his shift is responsible for fulfilling his part in the mission knowing that there is no substitute for him. The place of expressions of protest is in the public arena. They have no place in the IDF, because here they are mortal wounds.
They undercut the mutual guarantee and our enemies interpret this as a weakness and as an opportunity for their plot. Each of you has a personal responsibility to show up for the mission and carry it out without any extraneous considerations.
Such times bring with them challenges and risks. At a time when a storm is brewing outside and a storm is brewing within, the key to the IDF’s resilience and compliance with its missions is a solid chain of command, based on trust and discipline. We will close ranks, become guarantors for each other, and together we will improve readiness for every mission, on every front, against every enemy.
This is our guard shift!