‘We’re on the brink of the destruction’: 10,000 more reservists announce refusal to serve

“Changes in the justice system should be made by broad consensus, not by stealth.”

By World Israel News Staff

Some 10,000 reservists from various units in the IDF announced their refusal to report for duty in protest over the government’s plans for judicial reform, joining the 1,000 Air Force who announced their refusal on Friday.

“Changes in the justice system should be made by broad consensus, not by stealth,” Eyal Neve, one of the leaders of “Brothers in Arms,” said at a press conference in Herzliya.

“This is one of the most challenging evenings in our country’s history, but also the most critical. We have about 10,000 soldiers standing behind us tonight saying to the government of Israel – enough,” Neve added.

“We did everything possible to avoid this moment. We pledged to serve the kingdom, not the king. We are determined, we are fighters, we love this country, and we will not give up. We call on you to halt the legislation.”

Colonel Nevo Erez, commander of Dovdvan and former commander of the elite 13th Fleet naval commando unit who also headed a division in the Mossad, warned: “We are on the brink of the destruction of a third temple. Every day everything is falling apart; the economy, high-tech, foreign relations, and now the military. There is one person that benefits from this chaos – Bibi, you are solely responsible for all of this. Netanyahu has lost his humanity.”

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His words were met with loud applause and chants of “democracy!”

IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi warned that if the legislation passes, it would significantly harm the military’s competency.

Prime Minister Netanyahu is set to meet again with Halevi on the issue on Sunday.

Earlier on Saturday, 487 active duty reservists from the IDF’s Military Intelligence Division wrote a letter announcing their intention to stop volunteering for reserve service in various units. “We call on the Israeli government and the coalition members to immediately halt the dictatorial initiatives,” they wrote. “We regretfully inform our commanders that we are suspending our volunteering for reserve service until further notice.”

A number of counter-terrorism unit reservists also informed their commander of their intention to stop volunteering. They noted that they plan to return to the reserves “when the Israeli government fulfills its part of the contract and shelves the legislation.”

On Friday, Israel’s Channel 12 announced that that over 1,100 Air Force personnel, including more than 500 operational pilots in reserves, announced their intention to stop volunteering for reserve service.

In response to the pilots’ letter, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant called to postpone the legislation to reach a compromise. “The situation is very worrying. The legislation should be postponed,” Gallant stated. He later emphasized in a statement that he was working towards “a broad agreement in order to prevent any further harm to [Israel’s] security.”

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