Army chief cancels IDF-wide Passover vacation (YNetNews.Com -Yedioth Internet) Yossi Yehoshua Published: 03.28.12, 17:18)
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For first time in many years, all IDF units to be on full alert
during Passover holiday; army officials insist decision not related
to any planned military operations
Chief of Staff Benny Gantz has ordered all IDF units to cancel their
traditional Passover breaks so that they can operate in full capacity
over the upcoming holdiay, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Wednesday.
The implication of the decision is that for the first time in many
years, all IDF units will maintain their regular operations and
remain on full alert throughout the holiday.
As result of the unexpected decision, thousands of soldiers at
various IDF headquarters and bases will have to report for duty as
usual in order to allow their units to operate with no interruption.
IDF officials dismissed suggestions that the decision is related to
operational circumstances or preparations for military maneuvers. The
army said Chief of Staff Gantz made the call after asserting that he
does not accept the notion of an army-wide Passover vacation.
However, IDF soldiers who received the news Tuesday could not be
convinced that the timing of the decision was arbitrary.
Notably, German Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere on Tuesday said
that after meeting Israeli counterpart Ehud Barak, he was more
concerned about the possibility of an Israeli strike on Iran.
Over the years, an army-wide break during Passover became a tradition
followed by all major military units, including the Air Force, Navy
and intelligence corps. The IDF´s headquarters in Tel Aviv is also
traditionally deserted during the holiday.
But as noted, the longtime tradition will be broken this year, as
soldiers will have to divide their vacation days among themselves in
order to ensure that their units maintain their full capacity to
operate if needed. (Copyright 2012 © Yedioth Internet 03/28/12)
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