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February 13, 2011 3:51 pm

Maj. Gen. Gantz Appointed Israel’s 20th Chief of Staff

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

The cabinet unanimously confirmed Maj. Gen. Benjamin Gantz's appointment to the position of Israel's 20th Chief of the General Staff. Photo: IDF Spokespersons Office.

Following approval by the Turkel committee today, the cabinet unanimously confirmed Maj. Gen. Benjamin Gantz’s appointment to the position of Israel’s 20th Chief of the General Staff. Maj. Gen. Gantz will be given the rank of Lt. Gen., taking the place of Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi who is set to finish his four-year term in office. Maj. Gen. Gantz will begin active duty tomorrow.

“Maj. Gen. Benny Gantz is an outstanding officer and experienced commander, possessing both extensive operational and organizational knowledge,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, following the approval.

“He possesses all the qualities necessary to be an excellent commander to the Israel Defense Forces. His entrance into the position will create crucial stability in the army, especially at these deeply turbulent times in our region. The IDF is the nation’s army, ensuring the country’s very existence. The government is endowed with the responsibility of defending the public and promising the nation’s endurance, the IDF being its most important operational arm.”

According to the Prime Minister’s office, “in these sensitive times we must have leadership that can stabilize the most senior levels of commandership in the IDF. I trust and am sure that Maj. Gen. Gantz is the right person to lead the IDF in a period full of challenges and drastic changes.”

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Maj. Gen. Benny Gantz was born in 1959 and recruited to the IDF in 1977 when he joined the Paratroopers Brigade. In 1979, he graduated from the IDF officer school and was positioned as company commander and later Platoon commander in the Paratrooper Brigade.

In 1989 he was appointed commander of the Shaldag Unit in the Israel Air force. In 1994 he was appointed commander of the Judea Brigade of the Judea and Samaria Division.

In 1997 he left Israel for an academic sabbatical in the United States in 1999 was appointed commander of the Lebanon Liaison Unit. In 2000 he was appointed commander of the Judea and Samaria division.

In 2002 he was appointed as commander of the IDF Northern Command and in 2005 he was appointed commander of the IDF Ground Forces Command. In 2007 he was appointed IDF military attaché in the United States.

Maj. Gen. Gantz is a graduate of the Command and Staff College and the National Security College; he has a bachelor’s degree in history from the Tel Aviv University, a master’s degree in Political Science from the Haifa University and another master’s Degree in management of national resources from the NDU University in the United States.

Maj. Gen. Gantz is married and is a father of four.

Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi and the incoming Chief of the General Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz at the Western Wall. Photo: IDF

the honor guard welcoming the incoming IDF Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz. Photo: IDF Spokespersons Office.

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