New head of research division takes up post in Military Intelligence

We must turn hints, riddles and mysteries into intelligence, MI chief says.

New head of research department takes up post in Military Intelligence (photo credit: IDF)
New head of research department takes up post in Military Intelligence
(photo credit: IDF)
Brig.-Gen. Eli Ben-Meir took up his position on Sunday as the new head of Military Intelligence’s Research Division, replacing Brig.- Gen. Itai Baron, who is retiring from the military.
During a ceremony at the Kirya military headquarters in Tel Aviv, Military Intelligence chief Maj.-Gen. Herzl Halevi said, “The work of intelligence is complex. It is not easy to obtain the information, to make it available is very complex at a time when so much information flows, but there is no doubt that one of the most complex and substantial areas in the work of intelligence is the place where one must say what all this really says, to turn the information to knowledge.”
He added that “Intelligence does not land on our table, clear and sharp. Hints, riddles, mysteries and contrasting trends [appear]. A minute before you are sure you understood, a new message arrives, which throws a new light on all of which was until then.”
Baron added that regional changes required his division to obtain detailed, high-quality intelligence from “distant places we had not been to [before], to get to the bottom of ideas whose origins are in cultures that are totally different from ours, to unlock secrets that became increasingly hidden, and mainly, to deal with complex mysteries regarding the future.
“The intelligence we created is what allowed the IDF, the defense establishment, and the political echelon to deal with this uncertainty and make decisions. It is what allowed for the use of military force in the present, and to build it up to deal with future challenges,” he said.
Ben-Meir stated that “we are in the heart of one of the stormiest and most challenging times we have known in the State of Israel and the IDF. External challenges are growing, have become more complex, affecting multiple arenas, and they are changing at a rapid pace, while the constraints within which we operate are growing.
“We will continue to deal with the attempt to understand the reality, to describe it but also to influence it, while tightening our link to the IDF and its operative and operational needs,” he added.