Maj.-Gen. Michel Janko, head of Logistics and Technology in the IDF, spoke today with reporters about the IDF's logistical readiness for war.
"Since Shabbat, some 300,000 reservists have been recruited, from all locations, and we had to bring and spread them out as quickly as possible in the various sectors. Today, they are spread out throughout all the arms and sectors, thousands of reservists who improve the IDF's readiness, a significant effort with thousands of means of mobilization to help bring the soldiers from their homes, this is a relatively very fast time."
On the reports from the ground about shortages of equipment and even food, he said: "I am aware. I receive dozens of messages talking to me about equipment and shortages. When we look at the first days, there are no significant gaps right now, in a general perspective, in the ability of the order of battle to handle its fighting. And what there is and I noted, we are handling. We support all this effort, I spoke about it in Southern Command and in all the sectors, we're doing everything to improve the response."
Military equipment en route to soldiers in the units. (IDF Spokesperson)
People are not Hungry - There is a War and There Are Combat Rations
"In terms of food, reservists received food rations, bread, fruits and vegetables, as we planned. People are not hungry and are receiving food rations. Were they used to a different response in routine times? Yes. But this is war and there are combat rations. In places where we can bring meals to reservists who left their families. In some places more reservists came than we called up, I'll say this to the credit of the People of Israel, the beautiful People of Israel, but it's challenging us in bringing equipment to everyone."
"Both in terms of equipment and war, it's adapted and all planned according to the nature of the mission. We didn't intend for all 300,000 soldiers to receive ceramic vests. Those who fight in Gaza all need a ceramic bullet-proof vest."
Q: Soldiers are now doing sweeps in Gaza without ceramic vests.
"It takes time, anyone who's fighting or encountering friction in Gaza will get a ceramic (vest), I don't want to open up here on the different type of activity among reservists. In recent years, reservists received new uniforms, new shoes. It's our job and we want to be better. War brings another story entirely."
Q: An entire reserve brigade, 55, is doing sweeps in the settlements. How can it be that they don't have a ceramic (vest)?
"There are places, I'm sharing with you from the challenge of recruiting 300,000 soldiers, the recruitment process for the warehouses, and I was there. A reserve battalion of Brigade 55 took all the equipment, all the vehicles, at 16:00 there was already fighting in Gaza. Do we have efforts where not everyone with intentions has consequences. Everything you say about this or that unit, you appear to be right, I am handling the response."
"There are many gaps arising, but with such an amount of enlistment, it takes time to stabilize. Apparently Battalion 55 has gaps in ceramic equipment, we'll fill them in the face of the mission. I'm not saying this from an apologetic place, I want to reflect a situation."
We Won't Allow Donations of Bullet Proof Vests
Q: Do you have shortages? What do you say to someone who wants to donate ceramic vests? Did you get equipment from the US?
"I'm for donations, there's a mechanism for donations at the Association for the Wellbeing of Israeli Soldiers when it comes to perks and support for the soldier. We will provide combat equipment and adapt it to the mission, we don't need help in complementing the combat equipment. I don't intend to allow substandard bullet proof vests or ceramic (vests). The answer is no. With all the hugs and the love."