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January 31, 2019 11:54 am

Right Doubles Down on Verbal Attacks on Gantz Following Debut Speech

avatar by Israel Hayom / JNS.org

Benny Gantz, a former Israeli armed forces chief and head of Israel Resilience party, delivers his first political speech at the party campaign launch in Tel Aviv, Israel January 29, 2019. Photo: REUTERS/Amir Cohen.

JNS.org – Politicians from the right lambasted former IDF chief and Israel Resilience Party founder Benny Gantz on Wednesday following Gantz’s debut political speech on Tuesday evening.

Education Minister Naftali Bennett said in an interview on Army Radio that Gantz had been “a bad chief of staff.”

“The last time that [former Defense Minister Moshe] Ya’alon and Gantz were a team, it ended really badly—30 terrorist tunnels. Gantz put [Hamas leader] Yayha Sinwar in power,” said Bennett.

Coalition chairman MK David Amsalem said on his Twitter page: “I saw how Gantz was preaching to us about integrity and fairness. I’d be happy to get an answer from him about the farewell party he threw himself when he ended his time as IDF chief, which cost the taxpayers 600,000 shekels [$163,000].

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“It’s interesting what the hypocritical cheerleaders on the left would say if [Prime Minister] Netanyahu were to throw himself a party at a tenth of that amount. We know the answer,” Amsalem tweeted.

Tourism Minister Yariv Levin claimed that the purpose of Gantz’s speech had been to dupe right-wing voters.

“We weren’t surprised by Gantz. His goal is to pull voters from the right to build a left-wing government,” said Levin.

Chili Tropper, a social activist who is serving as a senior official in Gantz’s Israel Resilience Party, responded on Wednesday to the attacks.

“The calm security situation that Gantz created as IDF chief is something we’ve never seen here before. To accuse him of any kind of weakness is kind of a joke–they [the right] feel threatened,” Tropper told Army Radio.

When asked if Israel Resilience would join a government under Netanyahu, Tropper said, “We aren’t talking about whether we’ll sit in a Netanyahu government. Our goal is to assemble the next government, without ministers under indictment.”

Tropper also denied reports that Gantz had struck a deal with Ya’alon to guarantee him and his people three of the top 10 spots on the list for a joint faction, saying the agreement had not been finalized.

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