Rencontre Netanyahou Gantz Yaalon
Rencontre Netanyahou Gantz Yaalon. (photo credit:KOBI GIDEON/GPO)


The Knesset is unlikely to pass a bill Wednesday that would shorten the three-year cooling-off period currently required for high-ranking former security officials before they enter politics.

The legislation, sponsored by Yesh Atid MK Yaakov Peri, a former head of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), has been unofficially referred to as the “Benny Gantz bill” after the recently retired IDF chief of staff. The bill was rejected on Sunday by the ministerial committee on legislation.

A Likud spokesman said the party opposes the bill because it is against personal legislation, not because of Gantz or anyone else potentially impacted by it. But Peri accused the Likud of being “afraid of generals entering politics.”

“Narrow political interests prevent senior security officials from entering politics,” he said. “Israeli politics needs the best people, but the current law puts an obstacle before quality people.”

Peri’s bill would shorten the cooling-off period for top IDF, Israel Police, Prisons Service, Shin Bet and Mossad personnel. A similar bill was rejected three years ago.

The cooling-off period used to be six months, but it was extended to three years in 2007. At the time it was seen as aimed at preventing former IDF chief of staff Dan Halutz from entering politics.

As reported by The Jerusalem Post