Partner Leaves Israeli War Government

A key member of the Israeli war government announced this weekend that his faction would leave the coalition led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The decision came just a day after the successful hostage rescue in the Gaza Strip that returned four captives.

Former Defense Minister Benny Gantz said that he was leaving the wartime government. He criticized Netanyahu, arguing that the prime minister was making “total victory impossible.”

He criticized the hesitancy of the prime minister in relation to launching an attack on the Gaza Strip city of Rafah.

Gantz had previously stated that he would leave the emergency government if Netanyahu was not clearer in his plans for the current conflict in Gaza. He and his political movement joined with Netanyahu after the Oct. 7 terrorist attack.

It is unclear whether or not Gantz leaving the government could spark a new election. The Israeli government went through five elections between 2019 and 2022. The country is set to hold its next election by the latest by 2026.

The decision came as Israel surrounded much of Rafah. The city remains the last major stronghold of the Hamas terrorist organization. The Biden administration has warned Netanyahu against launching an operation against the city.

President Joe Biden called such a proposed operation a “red line.” The president also withheld munitions from Israel and added that he may hold more weapons if Israel launched the attack.

Many in Israel celebrated the rescue of four hostages taken during the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attack that killed 1,200 people. The rescue was criticized by a number of pro-Palestinian groups and the governments of Egypt and Jordan.

The hostage rescue killed an unknown number of Palestinian civilians. The captives were being held in the homes of civilians.

The successful rescue could have larger implications on the current conflict in the Middle East. Israeli forces lifted off near the American pier that is supplying humanitarian goods. Hamas stated that the pier is now a legitimate target.

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