Netanyahu apologizes after calling out intelligence chiefs over Hamas attack

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this weekend blamed his intelligence officials for not warning him ahead of the deadly attack by Hamas on Oct. 7 — but just 10 hours later, he retracted those remarks and issued an apology.

“I was wrong,” Netanyahu wrote on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, on Sunday. “Things I said following the press conference should not have been said and I apologize for that.”

“I give full backing to all the heads of the security arms. I am strengthening the Chief of Staff and the commanders and soldiers of the [Israel Defense Forces] who are at the front and fighting for the house. together we will win,” he added.

Netanyahu’s apology comes just 10 hours after he posted a scathing rebuke against his own intelligence officials, while simultaneously abdicating any blame.

“At no time and no stage was a warning given to Prime Minister Netanyahu regarding war intentions of Hamas,” Netanyahu’s now-deleted post said on X, Reuters reported.

“On the contrary, all security officials, including the head of army intelligence and the head of the Shin Bet, estimated that Hamas was deterred and interested in an arrangement,” he continued.

Israel’s intelligence failures ahead of the Oct. 7 attack have rattled Israeli citizens, many of whom have blamed Netanyahu and his governing coalition for failing to anticipate and prepare for what became the deadliest day in the country’s history. More than 1,400 Israelis died as Hamas infiltrated Israel’s southern border, brutalizing civilians and taking more than 220 hostage.

Some security officials have accepted some blame for the intelligence failures, but Netanyahu has not personally done so.

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