Israeli government appoints new IDF chief of staff

Cabinet approves Defense Minister Benny Gantz’s recommendation of Major General Herzi Halevi as IDF’s new chief of staff.

By World Israel News Staff

The Israeli government on Sunday voted to appoint Major General Herzi Halevi as the new IDF chief of staff, replacing outgoing IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi.

Halevi, 54, will formally replace Kochavi on January 17th, becoming the 23rd chief of staff of the Israeli military.

Defense Minister Benny Gantz nominated Halevi for the position prior to the Cabinet’s ratification Sunday.

“Today, we are submitting for Cabinet approval Defense Minister Benny Gantz’s proposal to appoint Maj.-Gen. Herzi Halevi as the 23rd IDF Chief-of-Staff,” Prime Minister Yair Lapid said at Sunday’s Cabinet meeting.

“The challenges that the IDF faces on a daily basis are varied and complex, starting with Operation Breaking the Waves in which the IDF fought against terrorism in Jenin and Nablus, to the continuing fight against the Iranian nuclear program and the spread of Iranian terrorism throughout the Middle East.”

“While we are succeeding on all these fronts, the fight will never cease. We cannot let our guard down. The main challenge has not changed: Our enemies do not want the State of Israel to exist and at any given moment we must be stronger, more sophisticated and more determined than them.”

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“We also need to be different from them: To maintain a moral army, to uphold democratic values, to see to it that whoever raises their hand to an IDF soldier or commander is punished to the fullest extent of the law. This is an affront to our most basic values and to their ability to defend the country. We have a different army, a people’s army. We will not allow the existence of armed criminal militias in the State of Israel.”

A native of Jerusalem, Halevi was named after his uncle, Herzl Halevi, who was killed during the battle for the city during the Six Day War, just months before the younger Halevi was born.

Halevi has previously served as commander of the IDF General Staff Reconnaissance Unit, the Paratroopers Brigade, Head of Southern Command, and as Head of the IDF’s Intelligence Directorate.

He is currently serving as the IDF’s Deputy Chief-of-Staff.