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Netanyahu, defense minister battle discreetly over new IDF chief

Facing the upcoming nomination of IDF’s next chief of staff, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu might undermine Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman's prerogative and appoint a relatively young and inexperienced candidate.
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s multiyear tenure is now entering its most dangerous phase: Netanyahu is losing his grasp over his own internal checks and balances system that, in the past, caused him to avoid security-related “adventures.” Now he is itching for a fight and wants to “leave his mark” on Jewish history. This issue was analyzed in an Al-Monitor article several months ago, but it seems that now he — and we — may be entering the point of no return.

Netanyahu will be investigated Oct. 5 one more time, but this doesn’t ruin his good mood. On Sept. 28, it turned out that Netanyahu has a major role in the drama that is playing out under the radar (mainly), regarding the appointment of the Israel Defense Forces next chief of staff. Netanyahu is making it hard for Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman to conduct an organized, transparent process for the appointment of a successor to Gadi Eizenkot; the latter is expected to return the keys on Jan. 1. Netanyahu favors the appointment of the youngest, least experienced contender among the four candidates. His goal: to receive a docile, submissive chief of staff who will owe his appointment to the Big Boss in Jerusalem.

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