Benny Gantz

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Person.png Benny Gantz  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(politician, general)
Benny Gantz.jpeg
Born9 June 1959
InterestsHannibal Directive

Employment.png Israel/Defense Forces/Chief of Staff Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
14 February 2011 - 16 February 2015

Benjamin Gantz is an Israeli politician and retired army general who has served as Minister without portfolio since 2023. Benny Gantz also served as the Minister of Defence, between 2020 and 2022 and as deputy prime minister of Israel between 2021 and 2022. From 2020 to 2021, he was the alternate prime minister of Israel.[1]

IDF Chief of General Staff

Benny Gantz was the 20th Chief of General Staff of the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) from 2011 to 2015.

In October 2011, Haaretz reported that the release of abducted IDF soldier Gilad Shalit on 18 October 2011, in exchange for 1,027 Palestinian prisoners, had focused IDF discussion on the Hannibal Directive that was designed to prevent soldier abduction:

Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz reiterated that the so-called Hannibal Directive, designed to prevent soldiers from being abducted, does not allow for a soldier to be killed in order to prevent his abduction.
Gantz was addressing the IDF's operations forum, which includes combat unit commanders at the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel and above.
Much of the meeting was devoted to discussing the lessons from the Gilad Shalit episode.[2]


In December 2018, he entered politics by establishing a new political party named Israel Resilience. The party later allied itself with Telem and Yesh Atid to form Blue and White, the colours of the Israeli national flag. Gantz's Blue and White alliance platform includes introducing prime ministerial term limits, barring indicted politicians from serving in the Knesset, amending the nation-state law to include Israeli minorities, limiting the power of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel over marriages, investing in early education, expanding health care, and re-entering negotiations with the Palestinian Authority for a peace agreement.

Benny Gantz was the 17th Speaker of the Knesset from 26 March 2020 to 17 May 2020. On 20 April 2020, Gantz agreed to join a rotation government with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Under the terms of the agreement, Gantz was to serve as Alternate Prime Minister and Minister of Defence, before succeeding Netanyahu as Prime Minister of Israel in November 2021. However, the coalition collapsed, resulting in another election in 2021. As defence minister, Gantz was in charge of Operation Guardian of the Walls in Gaza. In June 2021, he was reappointed Defence Minister and became Deputy Prime Minister in the new Bennett-Lapid government, serving in those roles until December 2022.

Emergency War Cabinet

On 12 October 2023, following the breakout of the October 2023 Gaza−Israel conflict, the National Unity Party announced that it would form an emergency war cabinet, with Gantz appointed Minister without portfolio in the Thirty-seventh government.[3]


Related Document

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:Goldstone: An act of negligenceArticle4 April 2011Noura ErakatDownplay of Israeli aggression towards civilians during the Gaza War, causes scholars to question Richard Goldstone. Regardless of what may have been his best intentions, Goldstone has negligently, one hopes not deliberately, undermined the laws of armed conflict and emboldened those states, like Israel, who believe that it is a surmountable nuisance.
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