Haaretz: Netanyahu retreated at the last minute from launching an operation in Gaza

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu backed off at the last minute from launching a military operation in the Gaza Strip after rocket fire on the city of Ashdod last Tuesday, the Haaretz daily reported Monday. While delivering a speech at a Likud election rally.

According to the newspaper, the legal adviser to the occupation government Avichai Mandelblit opposed the move and asked Netanyahu to convene the cabinet, "Cabnet" to make the decision, pointing out that Netanyahu consulted with Mandelblit phone by then.

Netanyahu held a meeting with the leaders of the security services and the army leadership after the launch of the rockets and suggested them to carry out a large-scale military operation in Gaza, but some of those present objected to the move because of its consequences.

Under Israeli law, the Israeli government is fully empowered to decide on any important military operation with clear objectives, especially since such an operation would mean a major war, while allowing the government to transfer the issue to the cabinet for decision.

In the last two years, Netanyahu has tried to pass a law that would allow the prime minister and the army minister to make war and peace alone, with Netanyahu holding the two portfolios.

The newspaper considered that Netanyahu was in a moment of "humiliating test" when the rockets were fired, especially after evacuating the rhetoric platform with hundreds of settlers remain in place, which exposed him to sharp criticism from his opponents.


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