Benny Gantz
Benny GantzFlash 90

Over a hundred IDF reserve officers and soldiers have signed a petition supporting former IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz's actions during 2014's Operation Protective Edge, in an attempt to preempt the criticism which is expected to follow the release of the state comptroller's report on the operation, reported Yediot Aharonot.

Among the signatories is Reserve Paratrooper Officer First Lieutenant Aharon Karov, who was critically injured during Operation Cast Lead in 2008.

"The whole discussion about this report does not bode well. Logic dictates that the situation will become even worse after the report is released, and we will find ourselves in a harsh internal battle in which we will prove to the world that we 'lost' in the war. And then more good people will be exposed to public criticism," the petition said.

"It hurts us to think that the IDF and its commanders will be dragged into such a place, which is not good for them and which does not allow them to properly respond. We trust the IDF investigations more than we trust any other investigations. No, they are not perfect, but they are cleaner and more truthful than any others, and most of all - they allow the army to act correctly in real time and to learn lessons which can be used later on.

"We choose to rely on the IDF and its commanders, and we call on the Israeli public to leave them out of the political wrestling arena."

Karov said, "As someone who fought in a war and paid a heavy personal price, I know that we can trust the IDF and its commanders, just like we can trust Gantz and current Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot.

"We all need to ensure the army remains free of any politics. The state comptroller's report is political, but the IDF needs to stay out of the discussion - and this is true whether we are discussing the Chief of Staff or a low-ranking soldier.