16.06.2024 Author: Viktor Mikhin

Another row in the Israeli government

The resignation of Benny Gantz

The resignation of Benny Gantz from the military cabinet of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has quite clearly exposed the vicious rows, quarrels and deepening cracks in the current Israeli establishment. All of this is happening as the Israeli regime is further isolated globally due to its criminal massacre of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

Netanyahu versus Gantz

“Unfortunately, Mr. Netanyahu is preventing us from getting closer to a real victory, which is an excuse for the ongoing painful crisis,” Gantz said bluntly in a televised statement, pathetically announcing his resignation. It may be recalled that Gantz is Netanyahu’s main political rival and has already been approved in Washington and London. Polls show that if early elections had been held today, he would have won and, therefore, such criticisms are unsurprising and correct.

Both Netanyahu and Gantz are criminals with the blood of a large number of Palestinians on their hands. The massacre of more than 37,000 Palestinians in Gaza since October 7 is just the tip of the iceberg. According to Arab estimates, a total of about 100,000 Palestinians were killed in the Gaza Strip, in the West Bank, during Israeli air raids on Palestinian refugee camps in Syria and Lebanon during the reign of the “iron and bloody” Netanyahu and his accomplice Gantz.

Gantz previously threatened to resign if Netanyahu did not explain how Israel would achieve its ‘six strategic goals’ in Gaza, which include ending Hamas rule in the sector. It has been more than eight months since Israel launched its annihilation, its genocidal war against the Palestinians of Gaza following an alleged surprise military operation by Hamas in southern Israel on October 7. Israel – and above all Netanyahu – not only failed to bring Hamas to its knees, but the Israeli regime suffered serious defeats at the hands of resistance fighters on the battlefield. Planning to defeat Hamas is only wishful thinking, as the Palestinian resistance movement has become stronger and in recent months support for it has increased in the Palestinian territories; sharp condemnation of Israel and its Prime Minister Netanyahu is spreading throughout the world.

Consequently, Gantz is playing the blame game when he accuses Netanyahu of denying Israel a “true victory” because they both want to see the elimination of Hamas in Gaza. A real victory for them means the defeat of Hamas, but this dream, as the facts and reality show, will remain unattainable even if Gantz or others succeed Netanyahu. There is a growing understanding all over the world that Israel may eventually defeat Hamas, but it will not be able to suppress the will and organic feeling of the Palestinians for freedom, independence, to live by their own rules and laws in their homeland, Palestine.

The political situation

Netanyahu and his coalition partners still hold 64 of the 120 seats in the Israeli parliament. His cabinet will not collapse after Ganz’s resignation if far-right ministers, namely National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, do not follow through on their threats to leave the cabinet, though such plans exist and put additional pressure on Netanyahu, shaking his embattled psyche every day.

For now, Netanyahu can remain in office until the elections, which are scheduled to take place in October 2026, provided that nothing will happen to him, but he will increasingly depend on far-right ministers wanting to replace Ganz in the military cabinet. However, Gantz’s decision to leave the military cabinet may be a clever ploy to avoid responsibility for Israel’s inability to achieve its military goals in Gaza. He wants to look like a kind of saviour and attract voters in future elections by becoming the new prime minister.

Internal disagreements

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid supported Gantz’s decision to leave the military cabinet, saying it was “important and correct.” Netanyahu, however, criticised this move, saying in a post on X: “Benny, now is not the time to shut down the campaign, now is the time to join forces”. Some far-right ministers with nothing to lose in this situation also made a sharp attack on Gantz: “There is no act less grand than leaving government during war,” Smotrich quipped. He accused Gantz of fulfilling the demands of Hamas, Lebanese Hezbollah and Iran by his decision to leave the military cabinet.

Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah insist on ending Israel’s brutal war in Gaza. Hezbollah has stressed that it will stop its attacks on Israel if the regime ends the war in Gaza. Iran has also repeatedly warned that the war in Gaza could spread to the entire region of Western Asia. Nevertheless, the Netanyahu regime has vowed to continue the war in Gaza despite growing international calls for a deal with Hamas.

The International Court of Justice has accused Israel of genocide. The International Criminal Court (ICC) has also requested arrest warrants for Netanyahu and his Defence Minister Yoav Galant for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Gaza. However, international pressure has yet failed to stop the Israeli killing machine, which is unsurprising, since the US has opened its security umbrella over Israel, exerting increasing pressure on the international organisations that want to bring Netanyahu and his regime to international responsibility.

Good cop, bad cop

The US and its allies are somehow trying to save their protege Netanyahu from accusations of a bloody massacre of defenceless Palestinian civilians in Gaza. This is not surprising, since the US itself is the same killer of Palestinians, supplying the most advanced weapons to the IDF on an bigger and bigger scale.  Now they are trying to portray Ganz as a centrist politician who can end the war.

But here a quite natural question arises: what is the difference between Gantz and Netanyahu? It is without doubt a mistake to believe that Gantz would have acted differently from Netanyahu had he been in Bibi’s place after the Hamas attack on October 7. It should not be forgotten that Ganz is a former chief of staff of the Israeli armed forces, as well as a former Defence Minister. He was the commander-in-chief of the army when the regime launched the war in Gaza in 2012. The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem said that the Israeli army, led by Gantz, killed almost 170 Palestinians during that war. In another war against Gaza in 2014, Israeli forces killed more than 2,000 Palestinians, including more than 500 children, while Gantz was still the commander-in-chief of the army. The Israeli army also killed hundreds of Palestinians in Gaza in May 2021, and August 2023, when Gantz was the regime’s minister of defence. In his 2019 campaign in support of the Israeli Keneset party, Ganz posted a video of the destruction in Gaza during the 2014 war. In this video, he boasted that he had sent part of Gaza “back to the Stone Age.”

This is in addition to the killings of Palestinians in the West Bank at the hands of Israeli forces during the era when Gantz held senior military posts. Gantz’s comments about the brutality of the Israeli military when he was chief of staff and minister of defence clearly show what he thinks about the Palestinians.

Now it seems Netanyahu is playing the role of a bad cop and Gantz is playing the role of a good cop, but, in fact, they are members of the fictitious apartheid regime, the regime that in just these 8 months massacred around 40,000 Palestinian civilians, injured and maimed about 100,000 people, primarily the elderly, women and children. What is this if not a Palestinian Holocaust, staged by the Israelis against the indigenous inhabitants of Palestine?

As long as the US and its Western allies continue to support Israel, the whole world understands perfectly well that the Israeli regime will not stop acts of genocide in the Palestinian territories. The regime seeks to make the Palestinian territories uninhabitable for Palestinians and force them to leave their homes, which is ethnic cleansing, but it is unlikely that the Palestinians will leave Palestine, which is their homeland, and they will fight until the end, preferring to die on their land. The world community must stop this carnage and make a firm decision to create an independent State of Palestine.


Victor MIKHIN, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook

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