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December 26, 2018 3:32 pm

Two Ex-Israeli Military Chiefs in Talks on Potential Joint Ticket for Upcoming Knesset Election

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

Then-IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz and then-Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon oversee an Israeli military operation, March 2014. Photo: IDF via Wikimedia Commons.

Two former heads of the Israeli military are said to be in talks to run together on a joint slate in the upcoming April 9 Knesset general election.

The Hebrew news outlet Mako reported on Wednesday that Moshe Ya’alon and Benny Gantz were in “advanced contacts” and the chance of them establishing a united front were very high.

The 68-year-old Yaalon was the IDF chief of staff during the Second Intifada in the early 2000s while Benny Gantz, 59, served in the role during Operation Cast Lead in 2014.

Following his military career, Ya’alon entered politics as a Likud member and was named defense minister by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 2013. He resigned from the position in 2016 after a falling out with Netanyahu.

After the Knesset election was moved up to April earlier this week, Ya’alon announced he would be forming a new political party.

“I am setting out as head of a party,” Ya’alon said. “This will be a party without mischief-makers. All my life I was a soldier for the state. I call on you to come together with me … to bring hope to Israel. The time has come for different leadership.”

While Ya’alon is generally considered to be a center-rightist, Gantz’s leanings are unknown, although it is widely believed he is a center-leftist.

Gantz has made no formal media declarations about his political intentions.

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