(photo credit: Channel 10)
As predicted in The Jerusalem Post, the Ministerial Committee on Legislation
voted unanimously on Monday to oppose a bill that could allow outgoing IDF chief
of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi to run in the next Knesset
Without the government’s support, it will be extremely
difficult for the Knesset to pass the bill, which would shorten the cooling-off
period currently required for top security officials from three years to a year
and a half.
Opposition leader Tzipi Livni also announced that she opposed
the bill, which was sponsored by Kadima MK Yoel Hasson and Labor rebel MK Eitan
Should the bill pass in the Knesset against all odds, it would
enable Ashkenazi, who will leave his post next month, to compete in the next
general election if it is held as early as August 2012. The next election is
currently set for October 22, 2013, but is likely to be advanced, as almost
every election has been.
Science Minister Daniel Herschkowitz expressed
satisfaction that the bill did not pass in the ministerial committee, saying
that it would politicize the IDF and result in generals making decisions to help
Hasson vowed to pass the bill despite the stiff
opposition. He blamed the vote on “scared politicians who are suspicious of good
people entering Israeli politics.”
Former IDF chief of General Staff Dan
Halutz, who recently joined Kadima, said he believed the coolingoff period
needed to be shortened. But he said he personally did not mind the requirement
to wait three years before entering politics.
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“The waiting period gave me
time to consider my future steps,” he said.
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