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Increase in Reservist Requests to Stop Serving Raises Concerns for Israeli Army Readiness

An Israeli army spokesman on Tuesday acknowledged an increase in reservist requests to stop serving, a day after the Knesset passed a law limiting some of the Supreme Court’s powers to oversee government decisions.

“There is an increase in requests to stop performing reserve service,” army spokesman Daniel Hajjari told reporters, in remarks confirmed by a military spokesman to Reuters.

Hajjari added: “If the reservists do not join to perform service for a long time, damage will occur to the readiness of the Israeli army.”

The spokesman did not give other details about the number of requests.

Judicial amendments in Israel… further division

military and political

In an unusual military intervention in a political crisis in Israel, hundreds of reservists said they would stop serving if parliament passed the judicial amendments law, which has caused an unprecedented political crisis and led to months of mass protests. Protest leaders said increasing numbers of reservists would no longer serve, and former senior officers warned that Israel’s war readiness could be in jeopardy. In its first reaction to the crisis, the army announced that it had imposed a fine of 1,000 shekels ($270) on one of the reservists, and sentenced another to 15 days in prison, suspended, for failing to respond to two summonses for training. Israeli commentators said it was “the first disciplinary action taken during the protest” by the military.

Netanyahu is facing unprecedented internal and external crises

In a stormy session on Monday, the Knesset passed the first law that restrains the Supreme Court from reconsidering government decisions, after opposition lawmakers left who say Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is pushing Israel toward autocracy.

The crisis sparked a deep division in Israeli society, and affected the economy severely, with the flight of foreign investors and the decline in the value of the shekel, which prompted the General Confederation of Trade Unions (Histadrut) to threaten a strike.

It also strained relations with the United States, Israel’s closest ally, which called Monday’s vote “unfortunate”.

#Israeli #army #admits #crisis #reserve #forces #harms #readiness
2023-07-25 17:52:26

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