Iron Dome, career officers on chopping block after IDF funding shortfall

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The Israeli military reportedly will make serious cutbacks due to a shortfall in funds.

Despite a government decision last month not to make a drastic cut in the defense budget in order to pay for new social benefits, the department is still facing a shortfall, Israeli media is reporting.

Yediot Achronot reported Sunday that the Israel Defense Forces has suspended the purchase of new Iron Dome rocket defense systems. The newspaper reported that the military informed Rafael Advanced Defense Systems that it cannot afford to purchase two of the batteries set to be delivered next year.

Iron Dome is in place in southern Israel to protect communities from rockets fired from the Gaza Strip.

The IDF also recently canceled six drills by ground forces due to budget considerations, according to the report.

Meanwhile, the Israeli business daily Globes reported Sunday that the IDF will fire 700 career officers and non-commissioned officers in all branches as part of a general cutback.

Globes also reported that the Ministry of Defense decided recently to halt orders for Merkava tank components.

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