Secret trip? Gantz to meet VP Harris in Washington

Gantz reportedly planned the trip without Netanyahu’s knowledge or approval.

By World Israel News Staff

Former Defense Minister Benny Gantz, a member of the emergency wartime cabinet, will travel to Washington D.C. and meet with American officials in the next few days, on a trip that was kept hidden from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

According to Hebrew-language media, Gantz is expected to sit down with Vice President Kamala Harris, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, and a number of Congressional representatives from both the Republican and Democratic parties.

Netanyahu, who brought Gantz into the current emergency government as a Minister-without-Portfolio, was reportedly kept in the dark about the plan.

After finding out about the trip, Netanyahu phoned the politician and “made it clear to Minister Gantz that the State of Israel only has one prime minister,” a source told Ynet.

The source stressed that Gantz had directly violated standard Israeli governmental protocol, which requires “every minister to clear travel in advance with the prime minister, including approval of the travel plan.”

In a press release, a spokesperson for Gantz downplayed the incident, claiming that he had informed Netanyahu about the trip in advance.

“Minister Gantz personally updated the prime minister on his own initiative on Friday of his intention to travel, in order to coordinate the messages to be transmitted in the meetings,” Gantz’s office said in a media statement.

A White House official confirmed that Harris will meet with Gantz to discuss governance plans for post-war Gaza and reforms within the Palestinian Authority.

During her meeting with Gantz, Harris “will express her concern over the safety of the as many as 1.5 million people in Rafah,” the official added.

Gantz’s trip to Washington comes as Hamas considers a ceasefire deal, which would postpone fighting in the Strip until the end of the upcoming Ramadan holiday.

According to reports, Israel has already agreed to the truce, while Hamas still has not returned an answer.