Key cooperation between the IDF and the Foreign Ministry is being held up
because of the army’s concerns of leaks inside the ministry, the state
comptroller wrote in a section on the Foreign Ministry dealing with the working
of its political planning bureau.
While the bureau was reorganized in
2009 following the Winograd Committee’s report two years earlier, which looked
into the shortcomings of the 2006 Second Lebanon War, it has not turned into an
effective planning unit – coordinated with the IDF, Defense Ministry and
National Security Council – that impacts on national policy.
report called for strengthening the political planning bureau inside the
ministry, and for the need for enhanced coordination between it and the various
political planning bodies in the Defense Ministry and the IDF.
to the report, the comptroller “believes that the key to firmly establishing the
Foreign Ministry’s place as an influential actor on national security issues is
dependent on its ability to professionally define, put together and present
long-term integrated views on the country’s national diplomatic aims, and ways
to archive them.”
The report found that the optimal level of cooperation
was never reached, and that there was still no good formal mechanism governing
cooperation between the Foreign Ministry’s bureau and its sister body inside the
IDF, largely because the IDF’s concern that information shared with the ministry
would be leaked.
Not only has the bureau’s place in the inter-ministerial
constellation not been secured, even within the ministry itself its goals remain
undefined, its methodologies not filtering down to other departments, and all of
its positions have not been manned, For instance it has four posts that still
need to be filled, and has also not named an economic
Furthermore, one of the bureau’s main purposes is to create
monthly and yearly assessments of the country’s strategic situation, with the
yearly assessment brought to the National Security Council and the
The monthly assessments are not prepared on a regular basis,
and the yearly assessment was prepared only once in 2008, and even then not
brought to the country’s major decision-makers or the government.