Step Down ‘Immediately’: Former Israeli Defense Minister Demands Netanyahu Resigns

Published September 9th, 2017 - 11:20 GMT
Moshe 'Bogie' Ya'alon with Netanyahu (AFP/File)
Moshe 'Bogie' Ya'alon with Netanyahu (AFP/File)

While attending a cultural event in Netanya on Saturday, former Defense Minister Moshe 'Bogie' Ya'alon called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to resign. 

Following the various corruption allegations surrounding Netanyahu and his colleagues and wife, Ya'alon said that ''from a public standpoint'' it was time for the prime minister to step down ''today, immediately.'' He charged that the time had come for Israelis to be led by a prime minister ''who has nothing to be investigated.'' 

Netanyahu is currently embroiled in three major investigations, referred to as cases 1000, 2000 and 3000. The first concerns his accepting of gifts in value above the allotted amount for his position. Case 2000 centers around conversations between Netanyahu and publishers at Yediot Aharonoth for favorable coverage of the prime minister and colluded attempts to put Yediot's competitor, Yisrael HaYom, out of business. Case 3000 focuses on submarines that Israel purchased from German firm ThyssenKrupp and the Israeli who helped broker the deal, Miki Ganor, who has acknowledged bribing officials. 

 


Several of Netanyahu's colleagues - including Ganor and a close Netanyahu adviser, Ari Harow - have turned state's witnesses in the cases in which they are involved, making the prime minister's involvement - and possible guilt - even more suspicious. 

Ya'alon, who served as defense minister under Netanyahu from 2013 until May 2016, when he resigned from the post and was subsequently replaced by hard-liner Avigdor Liberman. He cited ''extreme and dangerous elements'' in Likud, as well as professional disagreements with Netanyahu, as the reasons for his resignation. 

Ya'alon told the audience at the event that the various arrests in the Netanyahu scandals have created a ''lack of trust in the leadership'' of the country, and of the IDF as well. Several high-level IDF officials have been implicated in case 3000 - a first for the army, which normally remains relatively corruption-free

Netanyahu's wife Sara is expected to be indicted this week for fraud. She is accused of misappropriating personal funds for reimbursement by the state, costing taxpayers. 

MK Stav Shaffir, speaking at an event in Beersheba, commented on Mrs. Netanyahu's expected indictment, said that the Netanyahu's ''see themselves as a royal family and the people as their subjects.''


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