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Moderate Benny Gantz Leaves Israel’s War Cabinet, Saying He’s Frustrated with Netanyahu

Benny Gantz, a key member of Israel’s war Cabinet, has resigned, citing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s mishandling of the war effort and prioritization of political survival over national security. Gantz’s departure does not immediately threaten Netanyahu’s leadership, as he still commands a parliamentary majority. However, it signals a growing reliance on far-right allies who oppose ceasefire proposals and advocate for continued military action.

Gantz’s decision to step down reflects his frustration with Netanyahu’s leadership and his belief that the current direction of the conflict is unsustainable. Despite joining the government in a display of unity following a Hamas attack, Gantz feels Netanyahu’s approach undermines Israel’s chances of achieving a decisive victory. He emphasizes the need for a different direction in addressing the ongoing conflict, which he anticipates will persist for years.

The timing of Gantz’s resignation is notable, coming shortly after the dramatic rescue of Israeli hostages from Gaza. This operation, while successful, underscored the high human cost of the conflict, with hundreds of Palestinians killed, including children. Gantz’s call for elections in the fall suggests a desire for a shift in leadership and strategy to address the post-war challenges, including Gaza’s reconstruction and the pursuit of lasting peace.

Gantz’s departure leaves Defense Minister Yoav Gallant as the remaining member of the war Cabinet. Gantz urges Gallant to also resign, signaling a broader dissatisfaction within the government. Netanyahu, however, urges unity in the face of division, emphasizing the need for stability during this critical time.

Political analysts view Gantz’s resignation as symbolic, highlighting the tensions within Netanyahu’s coalition and the growing influence of right-wing factions. This shift could have implications for Israel’s domestic and foreign policies, particularly regarding the conflict with Hamas and its relations with international partners, including the United States.

The aftermath of Gantz’s resignation also sees demands from far-right figures like Itamar Ben-Gvir for inclusion in the war Cabinet, further complicating the political landscape. As Israel grapples with the fallout of the conflict and the challenges of rebuilding, the resignation of a key Cabinet member adds another layer of uncertainty to the country’s political future.

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