Topic:

IDF

Israel, Don’t Sacrifice Deterrence for Revenge

| October 16, 2018

Israel claims its policy of demolishing terrorists’ homes is a justified security measure. Destroying the family home of terrorist Khalil Yussef Ali Jabarin despite the fact that his family tried to prevent his attack on Ari Fuld seems more an act of revenge than deterrence, and could generate serious blowback with major ramifications.

How Feasible Is a Long-Term Truce with Hamas?

| September 14, 2018

The prospect of a long-term truce between Israel and Hamas brings with it both risks and opportunities. While it remains far from clear that such an arrangement is even feasible, Israel is giving Egyptian mediation efforts a chance.

Why Hamas Escalated – and Why It Is Winning the Present Round

| September 5, 2018

The accumulated deterrence achieved in the three previous rounds of wide-scale fighting between Israel and Hamas in 2008-9, 2012, and 2014 has come to a temporary halt. Israel must start preparing for a massive fourth round – a round in which Israel will, one hopes, replicate the cumulative deterrence it scored against the Arab States in 1973. This would mean subjecting Hamas to a threshold of pain sufficiently unbearable to induce it to stop fighting Israel altogether. 

Hamas-Israel Truce Would Be “Painkiller, not Antibiotic”

| August 9, 2018

All the economic benefits being offered to Gaza as part of a package deal – an improvement in water and electricity supplies, the construction of a seaport, the cancellation of debts owed by the Hamas government, a relaxation of the Israeli security blockade – hinge on Hamas accepting conditions it is categorically unwilling to countenance.

Israel’s Active Defense Campaign in Syria: The Next Phase

| July 12, 2018

Tehran’s recent decision to attempt direct clashes with Israel resulted in a resounding defeat on May 10, when the IDF destroyed 50 Iranian military targets in Syrian territory. Iran is now shifting gears back to its traditional proxy approach. While it appears reluctant to mobilize Hezbollah against Israel right now and risk a full-scale regional war, it is continuing to work on securing a military position in Syria to use for future aggression. Israel must maintain its flexibility and responsiveness in order to prevent the creation of a second Iranian mass missile front on the border.

The Illusion of Israeli-Palestinian Spatial Separation

The situation in the Gaza Strip since the 2005 disengagement debunks three fundamental assumptions that have become axiomatic in the Israeli security discourse: that total separation between Israelis and Palestinians will inevitably enhance security and stability; that the IDF will comfortably win any future confrontation in the evacuated territories; and that Israeli military activity in the previously held territories will enjoy massive international legitimacy and support.

The Limits of Technological Superiority

There is no technological solution to the problem of kite/balloon terrorism. However decisive it may be, technology in and of itself does not guarantee victory.

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.