Lieutenant General Benny Gantz, Chief of General Staff
Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, Chief of General Staff. Photo: IDF Spokesperson

Lieutenant General Benny Gantz, born 1959, recruited to the IDF in 1977 and joined the Paratroopers Brigade.

In 1979, he graduated from the IDF Officer School and was positioned as a Platoon Commander and later as a deputy Company Commander in the Paratrooper Brigade. In the 1982 Lebanon War he replaced an injured company commander, fighting alongside his soldiers in western Beirut.

  • Between 1987-1989 he served as Commander of the Ef'a Battalion in the Paratroopers Brigade.
  • Between 1989-1992 he served as Commander of the Shaldag Unit in the Israel Air force. Also during the same period, was a commander of the forces securing operation Shlomo, bringing Ethiopian Jews to Israel.
  • Between 1992-1994 he served as Commander of the Reserve Paratroopers Brigade.
  • Between 1994-1995 he served as Commander of the Judea Brigade in the Judea and Samaria Division.
  • Between 1995-1997 he served as Commander of the Paratroopers Brigade.
  • Between 1998-1999 received the rank of Brig. Gen. and served as commander of a reserve division in the Northern Command.
  • Between 1999-2000 he served as Commander of the Liaison Unit with Lebanon. He was the last IDF commander to leave the gates of Lebanon.
  • In 2001 was appointed Commander of the Northern Command Reserve Core and received the rank of  Maj. Gen.
  • Between 2000-2002, during the start of the second Intifada he served as Commander of the Judea and Samaria Division.
  • Between 2002-2005 he served as Commander of the IDF Northern Command.
  • Between 2005-2007 he served as Commander of the IDF Ground Forces Command.
  • Between 2007- 2009 he served as the IDF Military Attachי in the United States.
  • In 2009 he was requested by the Minister of Defense and the Chief of the General staff to serve as the Deputy IDF Chief of General Staff, a position he filled until November 2010. During this period, Lt. Gen. Gantz implemented the Tefen multi-year plan in addition to leading other processes in the reserve forces, human resources, the IDF budget and numerous others.
  • On February 2011 he was appointed by the Israeli government as Israel's 20th IDF Chief of the General Staff and received the rank of Lieutenant General.

Lt. Gen. Gantz is a graduate of the Command and Staff College and the National Security College and a US Military Special Forces course (one of only three IDF officers to graduate from the "Green Berets" training course). He has a Bachelors degree in history from the Tel Aviv University, a Masters degree in Political Science from the Haifa University and another Masters Degree in Management of National Resources from the National Defense University in the United States.
Lt. Gen. Gantz is married and is a father of four.