Topic:

IDF

The Israel Defense Forces, 1948-2017

| May 28, 2018

This study explores the evolution of the order of battle, material holdings and capability of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) since their establishment seventy years ago. During this period, the IDF has transitioned from an ill-equipped and low-quality militia to a dominant regional military power. Recent cutbacks in the IDF’s order of battle notwithstanding, Israel can still deploy ground forces equipped with the world’s largest concentration of operational armored vehicles. It has an exceedingly advanced tactical air force capable of generating nearly 2,000 daily fast-jet combat sorties, and is protected by the world’s most advanced and dense national air defense system. It has an effective coastal navy that deploys exceptionally well-armed, advanced small combatants and attack submarines; it has a significant strategic and tactical nuclear capability; and it likely maintains the world’s third-largest inventory of nuclear weapons.

Israel’s Invisible Enemies

| May 25, 2018

Radical sub-state actors are able to exercise full control of the territories they govern yet make themselves almost invisible when they choose to do so. As recent events in Gaza showed, this ability serves them not only on the military front but also in the arenas of diplomacy and public influence.

The Gaza Border Fence Riots as an Operational Campaign

When it comes to defending the Gaza border against the physical threat, the responsibility of the Chief of Staff and the commander of Southern Command is clear-cut and well fulfilled. That, however, does not constitute a sufficient response to Hamas’s effort to turn the border fence events into a strategic achievement.

New Military Intelligence Chief Arrives at Critical Juncture

| April 26, 2018

A new Military Intelligence chief has taken up his position just as Israel’s low-profile campaign to disrupt the force build-up process of its enemies is reaching a critical juncture. An escalation by Iran will jeopardize its Syrian and Lebanese projects. 

Israel’s Intelligence “Factory”

| April 16, 2018

In the 11 years since the Israeli strike on Syria’s nuclear-weapons production site, a quiet revolution has taken place within the Israeli defense establishment. Today, the IDF’s ability to detect, analyze, and use intelligence regarding emerging threats is substantially more developed than it was in 2007.

DEBATE: How Might the Israeli-Iranian Face-Off in Syria Evolve?

| April 1, 2018

Q:      The recent infiltration of Israeli airspace by an Iranian drone launched from Syria was considered by Jerusalem a severe violation of its sovereignty. In response, Israel conducted a mission to strike the Iranian drone installation in Syria. During that mission, an Israeli F-16 jet crashed. In the aftermath of this incident, Israel – while not wishing to escalate – made clear that it is prepared to act with determination and exact a heavy price from anyone who attacks it. BESA joins the debate by posing the question: How might the Israeli-Iranian face-off in Syria evolve?

The Strategic Implications of Effective Population Defense Against Ballistic Missiles

| March 21, 2018

Israel was the clear victor in the 2014 Gaza War. That Israel’s war aims were achieved by a defensive rather than offensive strategy does not diminish the magnitude of its success.

How the IDF Is Training for War in Gaza

| March 18, 2018

Military drills simulate what the Israel Defense Forces will face in a new kind of ground combat in Gaza – a kind that will inevitably involve civilians amid general chaos. 

How the IDF Is Preparing for Multi-Front War

| February 19, 2018

The IDF is implementing a plan to improve its ability to operate on multiple battle fronts simultaneously. While there is no indication that any one of Israel’s enemies is interested in initiating a full-scale war in the near future, the growing explosiveness of the region means that any tactical incident can snowball and turn into an unintended armed conflict very quickly – and one front can ignite others. 

In Jenin, Terrorists Get What They Deserve. In Gaza, They Don’t

| January 23, 2018

The night of January 17, 2018, we were witness to another reminder of the success of the hard-hitting strategy adopted by the IDF towards the Arabs in the West Bank – and the failure of containment in Gaza.  In Jenin, the murderer of Rabbi Shevah was killed and at least one other terrorist apprehended eight days after the crime. Gilad Shalit’s abductors were never punished and his abduction led to the release of over 1,000 terrorists. The lesson: peacemaking must be from the ground up.