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Taking Responsibility: The commander of the Gaza Division is resigning from his position

This (Sunday) evening, Brigadier General Avi Rosenfeld, who has been the commander of the Gaza Division for over a year and who has been waging the war in the area of the surrounding communities since the morning of October 7, announced his resignation. The Gaza Division was the unit responsible for protecting the ‘Otef’ communities from the threat posed by the Gaza Strip, and the central arm of the Southern Command of the IDF; and there is no choice but to define what happened on the first day of the war as a failure to meet the division’s objective. Accordingly, there is operational and ministerial responsibility for the division commander, and this is reflected in his decision.

“On October 7, I failed in my life’s mission to protect the Otef,” Rosenfeld wrote in his resignation letter sent through the heads of the surrounding authorities. “I am in pain and carry with me every day the heavy price paid by the civilians and soldiers of the IDF… Since then, we have been at the most just war of our generation for 8 months. I have no doubt that the IDF will not tire and will continue to fight until its goals are achieved and a fundamental change in the security reality… Everyone has to take responsibility for their own part, and I am in charge of Division 143,” Rosenfeld concluded.

Rosenfeld has had an impressive and successful career in the IDF so far, which included many years in command of the Shaldag unit, including during the Second Lebanon War. His role in the Gaza Division came after many years of familiarity with the southern front, as part of the operations against Hamas, as well as the northern brigade within the division, and began his role in August 2022. Rosenfeld was at the base of the division in Reim camp on October 7, and was forced to conduct the battle for the base itself while the entire sector experienced attacks and battles. Since then, Rosenfeld has been conducting the war effort for many months, especially for the creation of a new buffer zone on the Gaza border, which is supposed to prevent approaching the fence more significantly than before the war.

Rosenfeld is not the first senior official to resign –the head of the Military Intelligence Major General Aharon Haliva has already done so before him. Rosenfeld is likely not to be the last either; but we must see who will take responsibility for himself, and who would prefer to leave the question of responsibility for the test of history.

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