Aviv Kochavi and how he is the man safeguarding Israel

#20: Lt.-Gen.Aviv Kochavi

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September 29, 2019 23:24
1 minute read.
Aviv Kochavi and how he is the man safeguarding Israel

Aviv Kochavi. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi began his term as Israel’s top military officer with a bang: striking Iranian targets in Syria in the middle of the day.

While he may be a vegetarian, his first acts against Iranian targets in Syria showed that he’s just as hungry as his predecessor Lt.-Gen. (res.) Gadi Eisenkot, who first interrupted Tehran’s dream to build a large military power in Syria.

The strikes struck familiar targets, sites at Damascus international airport and a Hezbollah/Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps base in the al-Kiswah area, where IAF jets are believed to have carried out dozens of strikes as part of its effort to prevent Iranian entrenchment in the war-torn country.

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But the Jewish state rarely strikes during the day, preferring to wait until the late hours of the night to strike.

Born in 1964, Kochavi enlisted in the Paratroopers Brigade in 1982 and has served in multiple command roles throughout his career  including as commander of the Gaza Division and Military Intelligence.

Kochavi came in at a time when the IDF knew its window of opportunities to act against Iranian entrenchment was closing. He knew he would have to bring a different attitude to the table.

His first eight months have been anything but quiet: Tensions remain high along the Gaza border and have only increased on Israel’s northern front. Hezbollah and the IDF exchanged cross-border fire following an Israeli airstrike in Syria that killed two of the group’s members who were planning a drone attack against Israel. It was the fiercest bout of violence since the 2006 Second Lebanon War.

According to foreign reports Israel is alleged to have expanded its strikes against Iranian and Hezbollah targets in Iraq and Lebanon.
Kochavi knows the northern arena very well, having served as OC Northern Command until 2017, during which he changed the command, which is responsible for both the Lebanese and Syrian fronts, to make it more lethal and responsive to intelligence gathered by the military.

And when he took over from Eisenkot in January, he vowed to make the IDF “deadly and efficient.”


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