Former Chiefs of Staff establish 'social movement'

Benny Gantz and Gabi Ashkenazi form social movement but stress that it is not a political one.

Orli Harari ,

Gantz and Ashkenazi (archive)
Gantz and Ashkenazi (archive)
Flash 90

Former IDF Chiefs of Staff Benny Gantz and Gabi Ashkenazi announced Thursday that they intend to establish a new social movement, along with former Education Minister Shai Piron, who served as an MK for Yesh Atid in the previous government.

According to Channel 2 News, the new movement will be called “Pnima” (lit. inside) and is defined as a “cultural movement.”

The decision on the establishment of the movement was reportedly made during a meeting at Piron’s home, where he met with Gantz, Ashkenazi and other prominent activists from across the political spectrum in Israel.

“This is not a political movement, it does not aspire to overthrow anyone, certainly not Netanyahu - its goal is to establish an agenda of hope and not of fear, at a time when fear is sown in all directions," explained Piron.

There has been much speculation that Ashkenazi and Gantz would run for the Knesset, particularly in the case of Ashkenazi, after a poll found that if he were to enter politics he could potentially cause a watershed shift in Israeli politics.

Gantz was asked earlier this week about the possibility of entering politics, and he responded jokingly by discussing the two-year cooling off period that he must go through before he can run for office.

"I'm suffering from a bad case of the flu and struggling to recover from it, and it will take at least two more years until I recover from this illness," he said.

"I do not think I'm a savior of Israel, and I do not think that there are no good people in Israeli society. I do not have a decision on whether or not to enter politics, I am being painted in all types of colors but no artist has hit the mark yet,” added Gantz during a meeting with students in Be’er Sheva.