Netanyahu fires defense minister; ‘Israel will always remain my life’s mission,’ Gallant says

It came as no surprise that the prime minister dismissed Gallant a day after the minister spoke out openly against the judicial reforms.

By World Israel News Staff

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has decided to dismiss Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, his office announced Sunday evening.

The previous evening, Gallant made a televised appeal, calling on Netanyahu to halt the judicial reform. The defense minister warned that the rift in the country has caused “immediate and tangible danger” to Israel’s security, referring to the hundreds of IDF reservists who refused to show up for training in protest of the government’s planned judicial overhaul along with other acts of defiance among elite soldiers.

Gallant acknowledged that changes to the judiciary were needed, but that they should happen through dialogue.

“The branches need a new balance, which will strengthen public faith. But such sweeping changes cannot occur without dialogue.”

“I have never encountered the intensity of anger and pain as I have seen now. The rift within the nation has penetrated deep into the IDF and the defense establishment – this is a immediate and tangible danger to the security of Israel,” he said.

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir called on the prime minister to fire Gallant.

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“I call on the prime minister to fire Gallant, who came in with the votes of the right, but surrendered to the pressure of those who refused orders [to serve in the military] and tries to put a stop to the important reform,” Ben-Gvir stated in reaction to Gallant’s address.

Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi expressed remorse that “our defense minister gave in to pressure from the left.”

Opposition leader Yair Lapid praised Gallant’s “brave and critical step.” The move was also hailed by MK Yuli Edelstein, chair of the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, and MK David Bitan, both of Netanyahu’s Likud party.

“The security of the State of Israel has always been and will always remain my life’s mission,” Gallant wrote on Twitter and Facebook after being dismissed.