What impact has Benny Gantz’s resignation had on the government of Israel?

The main opponent of the Israeli prime minister, Benny Gantz, has resigned from office. Now what?

Not nearly as much as you may believe.

Benny Gantz, a former commander and the head of Israel’s National Unity party, announced his resignation from the war cabinet, citing the inability of the larger government to come to an agreement on a strategy for Gaza after the present conflict.

Gantz presented a six-point proposal for Gaza’s post-conflict governance in mid-May. He threatened to resign from the cabinet if this was not accepted at the moment.

Regarded as a moderate in comparison, Gantz is the main opponent of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The specifics of what transpired and their implications for Israel and Palestine are as follows:

What was the plan of Gantz?

A temporary US-European-Arab-Palestinian civil administration system would be implemented for the enclave, according to Gantz’s six-point plan, with Israel maintaining ultimate security authority.

Additionally, it suggested making ultra-Orthodox Jews, whose exemption from the draft is safeguarded by two parties in Netanyahu’s coalition cabinet, subject all Israelis to the national service obligation.

Why was Netanyahu not fond of Gantz’s proposal?

There is a growing agreement in Israel and beyond that Netanyahu turned it down to further his own agenda. “Netanyahu is preventing us from advancing toward true victory,” Gantz stated in his resignation.

According to US President Joe Biden, who is Israel’s main supporter, “there is every reason for people” to believe that Netanyahu is extending the conflict in Gaza in order to maintain his political standing, as he told Time Magazine on Tuesday.

That may be the conviction that the war will shield Netanyahu from the fraud, bribery, and breach of trust accusations that have followed him since his indictment in 2019.

Additionally, any future strategy for Gaza would cause division in his coalition government, with some members, like Gantz, favoring the administration of the territory by an international task force and others wanting to construct illegal colonies there.

It’s possible that Netanyahu, who ran on a platform of “Mr Security,” is attempting to sidestep confronting the shortcomings of October 7, the day that the Palestinian organization Hamas launched an offensive on Israel that resulted in 1,139 fatalities and hundreds of captures.

What is the far right’s gain from this?

increases their space for growth.

After Gantz resigned from the war cabinet, which consisted of Netanyahu, him, and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, a position became available for one of the far-right lawmakers Netanyahu needs to stay in power.

Itamar Ben-Gvir, the minister of national security, has previously indicated interest in taking over Gantz’s war cabinet position.

Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich have a solid right-wing alliance. Their total number of parliament seats exceeds Gantz’s center, and both are members of Netanyahu’s coalition cabinet.

Gantz was a weak political counterbalance, but his exit from the administration will take a powerful voice opposing the far right out of Israeli politics.

For Gaza, what does this mean?

Not much of it is good.

Ben-Gvir and Smotrich make it apparent that they intend for Israelis to settle in Gaza and for its residents to “voluntarily migrate.”

Although Netanyahu may not agree with this, since the assault on Gaza began in October, he has not addressed the far right on any major issues.

Will Israelis’ feelings change as a result?

Even while Israelis are sharply divided politically, they still appear to favor the war, but fewer believe Netanyahu will succeed in “destroying Hamas” and releasing the prisoners using force.

Tens of thousands of people gather each week in Tel Aviv’s “Democracy Square” and other places across the nation to advocate for the resignation of Prime Minister Netanyahu and the completion of an exchange agreement that will free the prisoners.

Survey after survey finds Gantz constantly ahead of Netanyahu; Netanyahu only starts to gain ground when Gantz threatens to resign from the cabinet, a move that is seen as disloyal.

However, elections might still be a while off, according to Middle East Institute’s Eyal Lurie-Pardes.

He believes that electoral laws would prevent an election from taking place until March if Netanyahu can keep his coalition together until the summer break.

Will it affect the sentiment of Israel’s allies?

Despite being the US government’s favorite intermediary, there is little indication that Gantz’s resignation will bring about any changes.

Since Israel began bombing Gaza in October, the US and other Western nations have kept arming and assisting Israel diplomatically while rejecting calls for international arrest warrants for Netanyahu and Gallant as well as accusations of “genocide.”

The US’s apparent rejection of Biden’s proposed ceasefire plan hasn’t done anything to erode support for Israel.

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