Israel: Defence minister ‘will resign’ if judicial overhaul goes ahead

Middle East Monitor  /  March 21, 2023

Israeli Defence minister Yoav Gallant [Likud] has threatened that he will resign if the government led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu persists in going ahead with its proposed judicial overhaul, Israeli media revealed on Monday.

Denouncing the wave of military personnel taking part in anti-government protests in Israel for almost three months, Gallant added that such “widespread insubordination may harm the IDF’s ability to carry out its missions.”

Netanyahu shared Gallant’s privately-expressed concerns with the cabinet on Sunday, according to Hebrew-language media reports. Likud party members are apparently planning to “soften” the proposed changes affecting the judiciary.

Senior military officers, meanwhile, are insisting that the Israel Defence Forces will stay outside any political brawl, even though hundreds of reserve soldiers and other personnel — including an almost entire fighter jet squadron — have refused to show up for duty in protest at the overhaul.

The Ministry of Defence is reported as having declined to comment on the issue.