Gilad Sharon
Gilad SharonFlash 90

Gilad Sharon, the son of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, had his hopes of contending in the upcoming Likud primaries dashed when a court upheld a decision by the party disallowing his candidacy.

The Tel Aviv District Court upheld a decision by an internal Likud court last week forbidding Sharon from running in the Likud primaries in February due to his failure to be a party member for the required three years.

Sharon has accused Netanyahu of purposely preventing him from throwing his hat in the ring as revenge for Prime Minister Netanyahu's adversarial relationship with his father. Only three months short of the mandatory three year period, Sharon argued that the ban is rarely enforced and pointed to Netanyahu's decision to waive the membership rules for Absorption Minister Yoav Galant earlier this month as evidence.

Galant had defected to the Likud from the Kulanu party earlier this month and is expected to be the Likud's candidate for Defense Minister.

Sharon's bid to rejoin the Likud had been widely opposed by the Likud rank and file due to his self-professed role as the inspiration behind Ariel Sharon's decision to withdraw 9,000 Jews from Gaza in 2005.

As part of the 2005 withdrawal from Gaza, Israel unilaterally withdrew from the Strip and parts of northern Samaria, demolishing 25 Israeli towns and removing Israel's security forces from that region.

The move was spearheaded by then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and involved the eviction of thousands of Israelis from 21 towns in Gaza and 4 in Samaria. In Gilad Sharon's 2011 biography of his father titled 'Sharon: The Life of a Leader', Gilad contended that he had convinced his father to uproot the thriving, decades-old communities.

Last February, Sharon defended the move and stated that he has no regrets despite the numerous military operations and thousands of rockets fired at Israeli civilian targets following the Disengagement. Sharon said that the Disengagement "clearly saved lives" in the long run and prevented Israel from having to "bring out piles of bodies."