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Israel adapts to changing strategic reality in Mideast

The Israel Defense Forces believe that excellent intelligence capabilities will determine the fate of Israel’s next war.
Israeli soldiers from the Golani Brigade take part in a military training exercise in the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights near the border with Syria on January 19, 2015. Iran confirmed today that a general of its elite Revolutionary Guards died in an Israeli strike on Syria that also killed six members of Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.  AFP PHOTO / JACK GUEZ        (Photo credit should read JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images)

The past year has not been a bad one for Israel’s national security. The wave of individual terror attacks, which emerged in October 2015, continued to die down. The “battles between the wars” conducted secretly by Israel against developments in the Middle East that threaten its security have been largely successful. US President Donald Trump entered the White House and started to make good on his pro-Israeli promises. On the “negative” side is the end of the war in Syria, with a clear victory of the Shiite axis.

One dilemma of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) — which is worse, Iran or the Islamic State (IS) — has long since been decided. (This dilemma was discussed in several earlier Al-Monitor articles.) Now there is a consensus among the Israeli security experts that Iran poses more dangers to Israel and the region than the expansion of IS. “IS was a passing fad,” a senior Israeli security source told Al-Monitor recently on condition of anonymity.

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