Dozens of former senior Israeli defense officials have called on the leader of the Blue and White party, Defence Minister Benny Gantz, to pull out of next month’s General Election, the Times of Israel has reported.
In their letter, published by major Israeli newspapers, 130 signatories stressed the need to do everything to reinforce efforts to oust Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
130 former top defense officials call on Gantz to pull out of election https://t.co/pE5YPdd4qD
— The Times of Israel (@TimesofIsrael) February 22, 2021
“Gantz’s party will weaken the votes if it fails to obtain sufficient support to enter the Knesset [parliament],” they pointed out.
“The time has come [for Gantz] to make a final leadership decision and withdraw from this dangerous campaign, which will end with obtaining results below the threshold and leave another party outside the Knesset. At the moment, the order of the day requires another brave decision… Do not enable wasting the votes of the camp for change… Israel will salute you.”
“Truly put Israel before everything,” wrote the officials, referring to Gantz’s own campaign slogan.
— The Palestine Chronicle (@PalestineChron) December 23, 2020
In response, Gantz said that he is committed to the objective and will continue to move forward.
He asserted that he intends to preserve Israel’s democracy by remaining in the government to counter Netanyahu, “who would otherwise impose a de facto dictatorship.” The Blue and White party leader rejected the officials’ call for him to step down as a candidate.
The signatories of the letter included former Shin Bet chief Carmi Gillon; the former head of the Israel Defence Forces and former Prime Minister Ehud Barak; the former National Security Council chairman Uzi Arad; and former Mossad head Danny Yatom.
(MEMO, PC, Social Media)