Netanyahu security doctrine


Ariel Kahana

Nine months after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presented a written outlook of his views on Israel’s security and defense in several different forums, Israel Hayomhas obtained a number of unpublished sections of the document.

In an article due to be published in the United States, former acting National Security Adviser Jacob Nagel reveals newly non-classified sections of Netanyahu’s security and defense outlook.

One of Netanyahu’s underlying assumptions is that there are currently no existential threats facing the state of Israel, Iranian threats notwithstanding. Nagel writes that Netanyahu thinks this situation should be maintained.

Another point of the outlook is the need to protect the homefront and vital national infrastructure and government institutions in light of tactical shifts by Israel’s enemies.

A third major aspect of Netanyahu’s outlook is that Israel must transition to a state of ongoing warfare rather than preparing for wars characterized by outbursts of extreme violence, such as those Israel fought in the early years of its existence.

The defense establishment considers a well-organized and written security and defense doctrine to be a tool of utmost importance when it comes to force building. Nagel states in his article that it is rare for a prime minister to compose his own security and defense outlook.

The last complete defense outlook for Israel was compiled by David Ben-Gurion and approved by the government in 1953. Since then, no other doctrine has been approved, although attempts have been made over the years to update the Ben-Gurion document.


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