ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 140

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Former deputy IDF chief Eyal Zamir takes up post as Defense Ministry director

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

Newly appointed Defense Ministry Director-General Eyal Zamir (left) with Defense Minister Yoav Gallant in Tel Aviv, on February 1, 2023. (Ariel Hermoni/ Defense Ministry)
Newly appointed Defense Ministry Director-General Eyal Zamir (left) with Defense Minister Yoav Gallant in Tel Aviv, on February 1, 2023. (Ariel Hermoni/ Defense Ministry)

Eyal Zamir, a former deputy chief of the military, takes up his post as the director general of the Defense Ministry.

Zamir, 57, replaces the current director general, Amir Eshel, who quit with the change of government.

Zamir was considered twice to lead the Israel Defense Forces, in 2018 and 2022. Ultimately, however, the front-running candidates were selected instead.

Speaking at a ceremony marking his appointment, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant laid out the challenges Zamir faces.

“The defense establishment works, and will continue to work, to confront threats both near and far, chief among them from Iran,” he said, adding that challenges must be met with “boundary-breaking creativity.”

Gallant also highlighted the military’s role in nation-building, working with youth, the disabled and bereaved families.

Thanking Gallant for the appointment, Zamir vowed that “all those who threaten us will be met with an iron wall — a robust and secure defense establishment.”

Zamir most recently served as IDF deputy chief of staff. In 2018, he was the commander of the Southern Command, overseeing violent clashes along the Gaza border during protests organized by the Hamas terror group.

Between 2012 and 2015, Zamir was Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s military secretary.

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