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When the interim Winograd report came out the Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced with great fanfare all the steps that he was going to take to ensure that another disaster such as last year’s Second Lebanon War would never happen again. One of those steps was a greater involvement of the National Security Council in Israels foreign affairs and strategy. I guess it was just lip service because today the Chairman of the National Security Council Ilan Mizrahi resigned because Olmert has effectively shut him out saying, “due to the political culture and other reasons, the council is no longer able to fill the central role it deserves.”

National Security Council Chairman to Step Down in November

by Nissan Ratzlav-Katz
(IsraelNN.com) National Security Council Chairman Ilan Mizrahi intends to quit the NSC by November 1, 2007. He will be followed out by his deputy, Itamar Ya’ar, in December. Reacting to Mizrahi’s decision, Prime Minister Olmert’s office released a statement praising the NSC chairman for his having “greatly contributed to upgrading the status of the NSC….” According to the Prime Minister’s Office, Mizrahi “was involved in a series of measures designed to improve [the NSC’s] abilities and its functioning,” and he even “oversaw the agenda of the [government] security cabinet.”Prior to his role at the head of the NSC, which he took over from Giora Eiland in 2006, Mizrachi served as the deputy director of Israel’s international intelligence agency, the Mossad. During his one-and-a-half-year term, Mizrahi was involved in the work of the Lipkin-Shahak committee on implementing the Winograd Commission’s interim report. The Winograd Commission, assigned with the task of investigating the failures in last year’s war with the Lebanese Hizbullah, recommended that the NSC play a more central role in the government’s decision-making process. However, on Monday, Mizrahi told the Ynet news outlet that “due to the political culture and other reasons, the council is no longer able to fill the central role it deserves.”The Legal Forum for the Land of Israel called the NSC chairman’s resignation an indication of government dishonesty. The Forum asked the Winograd Commission to publish a second interim report that would detail the progress in implementation of the commission’s recommendations in the first interim report.
Nachi Eyal, Director of the Forum, said, “The resignation and statements of the head of the National Security Council are proof that the government is misleading the public and the members of the Winograd Commission. The report has not been implemented and we may yet find ourselves in a third Lebanese fiasco.”

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