Nearly 1,000 kibbutz members from the Beit Shean area were joined by about 35 army reservists in a demonstration outside the Prime Minister’s Office yesterday urging that the Israel Defense Force be withdrawn from Lebanon. The Cabinet was meeting at the time.
The soldiers, paratroopers who have been in the same unit since 1965, described their protest as “a-political.” Their aim, they said, was to persuade the government to adopt a policy that “makes some sense.” They said they had organized spontaneously on the last night of their reserve duty in Lebanon.
According to the soldiers, the IDF’s continued presence in Lebanon was harmful both to training and morale. “We spend our nights chasing elusive figures, afraid of Shiites armed with the guns which Arik (former Defense Minister Ariel) Sharon had given them,” one reservist said.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.