PM Netanyahu is believed to push for the appointment of his military secretary, Yochanan Locker, who is believed to support an Israeli strike on Iran's nuclear facilities. However, Army Chief Gantz opposes the move and wants Planning Branch Head Amir Eshel, known for objecting to an Iran strike, to take the post.
- Gantz: Iran threat can be overcome
- US concerned over Israeli strike in Iran
- Gantz rejects criticism on IDF appointments
Notably, some senior army officials claim that the two candidates hold identical views on the Iran issue and have not yet been asked to present their stance. One way or another, it appears that the issue of a strike in Iran prompted the prime minister to interfere in the appointment.
The battle over the next Air Force chief, which up to now was conducted behind the scenes, reached the Knesset's State Control Committee Sunday, where Army Chief Gantz presented a decisive stance regarding his right to name the next IAF commander.
"Officers must not be appointed in contradiction to the army chief's view, and the Air Force commander is just like any other general," Gantz told the Committee, which discussed the State Comptroller's Report on IDF appointments. "That's why we have an army chief – he summons the candidates, and he is the one who provides the explanations. The army chief received the government's trust for running the military, and this is how it should be done."
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