CBNNews.com - JERUSALEM, Israel - In his remarks at Wednesday night's closing session of the eight annual Herzliya Conference, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert exonerated his handling of the Second Lebanon War in 2006.
"I do not regret the crucial decisions I made as prime minister, not those pertaining to the fighting in Lebanon and not those concerning other events," Olmert said.
"Mistakes were made, yes, and there were failings, certainly. But lessons were learned, mistakes were corrected, and operational patterns were changed," he said. "And foremost, the decisions we have made since then have brought us more security, more quiet, less terror, greater deterrence and more prosperity to Israel than it has seen in years," he said.
"The present situation is incomparably better than that which preceded it," Olmert said. "The residents of the north have peace and security. There is no daily friction and no firing of [Katyusha] rockets or even Kassams," said the prime minister.
"This has gone on not for a day or a month, but for a full 18 months. This is the longest period of quiet in the north in the past 25 years," he said, adding that "our enemies in the north are in no hurry to fight us."
The opposition Likud party issued a response stating Olmert was "disconnected from reality and inventing a virtual reality as the [publication of the final] Winograd Report [imvestigating the government's handling of the war] approaches."
"In the north, the Hezbollah [terror organization] has armed itself with more rockets than it had on the eve of the war, and in the south, Israeli citizens live under a constant missile threat," the statement read.
The Winograd Commission will issue its completed report on Wednesday, January 30.
Sources: YNet news service, israel national news