by Philip Giraldi
August 22, 2013

If there should happen to be an al-Qaeda attack in Calhoun County Alabama, Sheriff Larry Amerson will presumably know what to do. That is because he and a number of colleagues in law enforcement have received paid trips to Israel to learn how to deal with the terrorist threat. The Washington-based Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) sponsors a Law Enforcement Exchange Program “in order to learn how to better protect the U.S. communities from terrorist attacks.” The program takes law enforcement officials from the United States and sends them to Israel for training in the “strategies and techniques perfected by Israeli law enforcement.” Amerson, past president of the National Sheriff’s Association, made his trip in 2012. Along the way, he reportedly benefited from a “greater understanding of the situation in Israel as it relates to terrorist threats.” JINSA also hosts conferences in the U.S. where Israeli officers are brought over to brief American law enforcement officials.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is also involved in the effort to indoctrinate the U.S. law enforcement community. Its website’s Homeland Security Monitor chronicles numerous meetings between Israeli intelligence and police officials and their U.S. counterparts, to include numerous trips to Israel to learn from the masters of the craft about various aspects of security, including controlling borders and airports. Even firemen have made the journey, presumably to learn how a fire in Israel differs from a fire in the United States.

Ironically, American law enforcement and emergency services are every bit as capable as those in Israel and really have nothing to learn. The difference in practice is that Israel uses extensive profiling to identify threats, which means Arabs are regularly stopped and questioned. Exposure to that dubious technique is often paid for by the U.S. taxpayer as much of the travel to Israel is funded by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which provides billions of dollars in training grants to cover the expenses. Marc Kahlberg of International Security Consulting offers a package that is called “Eye of the Storm.” He promises “an exclusive learning tour into the heart of Hebron. You will have the opportunity to see first-hand how the police there are dealing with a daily volatile situation. You will feel the adrenalin, but be completely safe and will be the guests of the Israeli Police Commander.” As Hebron is the largest Arab city on the West Bank with a population of 250,000 that against its will hosts an illegal Israeli settlement of 1,000 protected by the police and army, it promises to be an interesting experience.

It has been reported that when the United States was attacked on 9/11 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was pleased because he understood that Washington and Tel Aviv would now be joined at the hip in their mutual response to what Israel has been defining as terrorism. When Netanyahu spoke before congress shortly afterwards he said “We are all targets” before engaging in a number of meetings instructing Washington regarding what must be done. Netanyahu’s Israel succeeded beyond its wildest dreams, exploiting the incident to such an extent that the United States has adopted wholesale Israeli perceptions of Middle Eastern politics. As Scott McConnell has observed, there exists “a transmission belt, conveying Israeli ideas on how the United States should conduct itself in a contested and volatile part of the world. To a great extent, a receptive American political class now views the Middle East and their country’s role in it through Israel’s eyes.”

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