Peres visits Rafael HQ 370.
(photo credit: Rafael)
President Shimon Peres came away from a visit to Rafael Advanced Defense
Systems’s headquarters on Monday convinced that the only way Israel can meet its
current and future security challenges is with the use of robotics and
As one of the architects of Israel’s multifaceted defense
establishment, Peres continues to take a keen interest in national security and
frequently visits IDF bases and armament plants in which new, hi-tech defense
systems are being developed.
The president spoke with Rafael personnel on
the subject of a “smart” army, meaning one based more on hi-tech than on foot
He has held talks on the topic with Defense Minister Moshe
Ya’alon, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz and Finance Minister Yair
At the outset of his visit, Peres talked to Rafael’s executive
about the compendium of threats confronting Israel and developments on its
borders, and said that these combined challenges demanded a new, innovative kind
of army based almost entirely on technology.
Rafael CEO Gen. (res)
Yedidya Yaari convened a forum of the company’s top young researchers and
developers in order for them to hear from Peres what his vision for the future
is, and how he sees the new army.
One of the major points he raised was
the extent to which robots can replace soldiers, thereby saving lives, which in
turn will contribute to national concerns and economic development.
emphasized that in today’s technological era, the race to be first is more
important than ever, and that Israel has a technological edge on most other
He inspected the projects on which the scientists have been
working, including miniature missiles that can pinpoint their targets with
The scientists said that they were in sync with the president
and told him that they already had developed defense equipment along the lines
that he suggested.
“You are dealing with security in the way that it
ought to be done, and you have ensured that Israel will be ready for any
emergency,” said Peres at the conclusion of his visit.