Israel's National Security Doctrine


The national security doctrine aims to advance the national objectives and guide their pursuance. The national security doctrine that Ben-Gurion conceived in the early 1950s was never formulated into a binding written document and remained an oral legacy broadly accepted by the Israeli defense and political establishment ever since. As of the 1970s, there were several attempts of formulating an updated national security doctrine, but they never materialized into a formally approved and written doctrine by the government.



During the seventy years of independence, Israel has experienced several changes in its geopolitical situation and in the nature of threats: globalization processes, technological revolutions in communications, cyber, and space, regional and global changes, changes in the nature of wars and changes in the Israeli society. These changes require a re-examination of the national security doctrine and its suitability to the dynamic reality of the 21st Century.



Since Israel has to deal with a broad range of different types of threats, there is special importance to adapting the national security doctrine to the objectives of the state and to its changing regional and strategic environment.



The Herzliya Forum for Re–formulating Israel's National Security Doctrine


The Herzliya Forum for Re–formulating Israel's National Security Doctrine was established in 2013 to draw on the experience of decision-makers, members of the defense establishment, and academics to identify the existing gaps in the current national security doctrine and put forward new components and required updates.



The Forum has convened eight symposiums, held several roundtable sessions at the Herzliya Conference, conducted meetings and interview with senior decision-makers, and published a dozen position papers (see the appendix for the list).



The purpose of the forum activities is to create a debate regarding the national security doctrine among relevant professionals and decision-makers.



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