Israel likely to take a backseat in war against Islamic State

Jerusalem's role will probably be defined by ability to provide rapid and precise intelligence support to the US-led military forces charged with making air strikes on Islamic State positions.

By
September 12, 2014 04:05
1 minute read.
john kerry jeddah

US Secretary of State John Kerry (C) poses with his Arab counterparts in Jeddah September 11, 2014. . (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Israel will likely have an important yet backseat role in the international coalition forming against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

That role will probably be defined by Jerusalem’s ability to provide rapid and precise intelligence support to the US-led military forces charged with making air strikes on Islamic State positions.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Israeli defense officials will not publicly confirm any plans to provide aid to the emerging war effort.

Over recent months, IDF Military Intelligence has grown by more than a thousand personnel to enable it to track the growing jihadi presence in neighboring Syria.

There is little reason to believe that this expanded intelligence- gathering capability can’t be used to assist coalition members targeting Islamic State positions across the Middle East.

In theory, Military Intelligence can turn the gaze of its spy satellites on Islamic State movements, and, as a recent Reuters report stated, can assist coalition members in carrying out accurate battle damage assessments after air strikes.

Visual intelligence is one of several forms that Israeli assistance can take.



Last year, when the IDF took the decision to expand the size of Military Intelligence, the move was driven by concerns that radical jihadi groups, particularly Jabhat al-Nusra and Islamic State, will one day turn their weapons on Israel, in the event that they succeed in bringing down the Assad regime. When that day comes, Israel wishes to be ready.

The original goal of the intelligence expansion was to enable IDF field units to receive the latest information on their sectors in case Israel is forced into clashes with jihadis on the Syrian border, a prospect that today appears distant.

In the meantime, however, Israel can help the West in its battle to degrade the nefarious influence of Islamic State, which represents a clear and present danger to Middle Eastern stability, and to international security as a whole.

Related Content

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a news conference following the extraord
July 19, 2018
Palestinians slam nation-state law as ‘racism, apartheid’

By KHALED ABU TOAMEH