[News] Top Cops Return From Anti-Terror Study In Israel

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Tue Feb 10 09:10:21 EST 2004


JINSA Online, February 09, 2004

Top Cops Return From JINSA-Sponsored Anti-Terror Study In Israel
Officials laud benefits of resource sharing for deterring terrorism

Fourteen of the most senior police chiefs, sheriffs and state police 
commanders returned from Israel last week after five days of intensively 
studying counter terrorism techniques. These law enforcement executives 
traveled to Israel on January 24 and returned January 30, 2004. They went 
as participants in JINSA's Law Enforcement Exchange Program (LEEP). Modeled 
after the JINSA's extremely successful Flag & General Officers Trip, the 
LEEP program is designed to establish cooperation between American and 
Israeli law enforcement personnel and to give the American law enforcement 
community access to the hard "lessons learned" by the Israelis in the 
interdiction of and response to all forms of terrorism.

The Israeli National Police hosted the Americans with participation by the 
Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and the Israel Security Agency.

The delegation studied methods and observed techniques used by Israeli 
police forces in preventing and reacting to suicide bombers, and joined 
Israeli police on a nighttime patrol of Tel Aviv. The agenda also focused 
on the critical role of intelligence gathering and interagency information 

At several seminars, Israeli commanders of bomb disposal and undercover 
units briefed the delegation on the increasing sophistication of domestic 
terrorists, who can employ a range of weapons, from knives and guns, to car 
bombs or cell phones outfitted with explosives. American officials learned 
about the mindset of a suicide bomber and how to spot trouble signs. One of 
the highlights of the intensive five-day schedule was a nighttime patrol 
with the Tel Aviv Police.

Israeli experts also discussed how to secure large venues, such as shopping 
malls, sporting events and concerts, without disrupting the enjoyment of 
the public.

The group also took time to look at the Security Fence as a defensive 
measure to lessen the possibility of terrorist infiltration. The saw where 
the fence has already been constructed as well as planned future sights. 
The consensus of the group was that in light of prior Israeli casualties 
the fence has saved lives.

Steven Pomerantz, a former Assistant Director of the FBI and a member of 
JINSA's Board of Advisors, led in the planning and execution of the trip on 
the American side. In summing up the goals of the LEEP project he noted, 
"Nothing can replicate American officials seeing these types of problems 
firsthand and the systems that are put in place to deal with them."

This is the second time JINSA has organized a delegation of U.S. law 
enforcement officials to learn from their Israeli counterparts. Called the 
Law Enforcement Exchange Program (LEEP), JINSA hopes to undertake the trip 
annually, each time with a new group of officers.

Participants were invited through a process that considered geographic 
region, their involvement in national professional policing organizations 
and their professional responsibilities in the fight against terrorism. For 
example, in addition to serving as chief of his department, Chief Joseph 
Polisar is the current president of the International Chiefs of Police 
(IACP), the largest international police organization in the world. All 
other major American law enforcement organizations were represented on the 
trip including the Major Cities Chiefs Association, Major Counties Sheriffs 
Association and the Police Executive Research Forum.

Participants in the program included: Chief Joseph Carter, Massachusetts 
Bay Transportation Authority; Col. Richard Fuentes, New Jersey State 
Police; Sheriff Patrick Gallivan, Erie County (N.Y.) [encompassing Buffalo, 
NY]; William Gore, Special Adviser and Chief of Investigations for the San 
Diego County (Calif.) District Attorney; Commander Cathy Lanier, commanding 
officer of the Special Operations Division of the Metropolitan Police 
Department (Washington, D.C.); Sheriff Patrick McGowan, Hennepin County 
(Minn.)[encompassing Minneapolis]; Col. Jeffrey Miller, Pennsylvania State 
Police; Bureau Chief John Miller, Los Angeles Police Department's Critical 
Incident Management Bureau; Sheriff Jim Pendergraph, Mecklenburg County (N. 
Car.) [encompassing Charlotte]; Chief Joseph Polisar, Garden Grove (Calif.) 
Police Department; First Deputy Superintendent Dana Starks, Chicago Police 
Department; Deputy Chief Larry Thompson, Chief of Uniformed Services, 
United State Capitol Police; and Chief Maryanne Viverette, Gaithersburg 
(Md.) Police Department.

"The Israeli experience with domestic terrorism is so vast. Every Israeli 
official we met with was anxious for the Americans to learn from their 
tragic experience," related Marsha Halteman, director of corporate and 
community projects at JINSA and who accompanied the delegation to Israel. 
"It's such a tiny country, with a national police force smaller than that 
of most major cities in America. The Israelis were eager to take the time 
and resources to share their experiences with the group which we hope will 
ultimately save American lives should our law enforcement community ever 
find themselves in the same position again. As far as the interdiction of 
terrorism is concerned, it already has."

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