Ex-Israeli military chief Gantz launches campaign to replace Netanyahu

Retired Israeli army chief Benny Gantz is launching his political campaign on Tuesday, seeking to position himself as the first serious challenger to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decade-long rule. Gantz’s emergence in the polls as Netanyahu’s top rival highlights how security rules supreme in the minds of most Israeli voters, AP said. The ex-general has been riding a wave of popularity, even while saying little and presenting a vague ideological platform. Polls predict a Netanyahu reelection, with his right-wing Likud party taking around 30 of parliament’s 120 seats, and Gantz’s Resilience party coming a distant second with around 15, Reuters reports. That would line Gantz up to join a future Netanyahu-led coalition government - unless the ex-general tries to mobilize like-minded factions against the incumbent, now in his fourth term.