As others slam timing as ‘political, Gantz backs slaying of Gaza terror chief

November 12, 2019
Blue and White leader says ‘difficult decisions’ are needed in campaign against terrorism; other opposition MKs accuse Netanyahu of ordering assassination for personal gain

Blue and White party chairman Benny Gantz

Times of Israel reports, “Opposition leader MK Benny Gantz on Tuesday gave his support to Israel’s early-morning slaying of a senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad commander in the Gaza Strip, as terror groups responded by launching dozens of rockets at Israel, shutting down cities from the south all the way to the Tel Aviv area.”

“While some opposition lawmakers accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of being motivated by political considerations in ordering the assassination, others called for unity in the face of the rocket attacks and urged that politics be set aside. Gantz tweeted that the government had made the “correct decision” in ordering the targeted killing of Baha Abu al-Ata in a strike in Gaza.”…

“Ahead of the elections, Gantz, a former IDF commander who is currently attempting to form a coalition, campaigned on taking a strong stance against attacks from Gaza. In the past he accused Netanyahu of “erasing” Israel’s deterrence versus terror groups by holding back on firm military action. Blue and White party No. 2 MK Yair Lapid wrote that “deterrence can only be restored using force.”

Leader of the Joint list Ayman Odeh

“MK Ayman Odeh, who leads the Joint List alliance of predominantly Arab parties, slammed Netanyahu, accusing him of ordering the killing of Abu al-Ata for political gain at a time when his grasp on the premiership is the most tenuous in a decade. “A cynical man who lost two consecutive elections will leave only scorched earth in a desperate attempt to remain in office,” Odeh tweeted. “For ten years he has risen every morning with the aim of deepening the occupation [of the West Bank] and distancing the chances for peace.”

“Odeh was backed by fellow Joint List members MK Aida Touma-Sliman, who tweeted that “Netanyahu’s cynicism and cruelty know no bounds — he started a war as a political exercise” and MK Ofer Kasif, who wrote that “to save his own skin — Netanyahu resorted to the only thing he can do — kill, destroy.”

Labor party parliament member Omer Bar Lev

“Other opposition lawmakers accused Netanyahu of political motives in deciding to order the assassination. Labor-Gesher MK Omer Bar-Lev told Kan public radio that he was concerned the killing was ordered to prevent Gantz from forming a minority coalition.” (more…)

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