IDF Chief of Staff at Centcom: Cooperation with the US Army ‘Unprecedented’

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Photo by IDF on 22 June, 2021
By Aryeh Savir/TPS • 23 June, 2021

Jerusalem – IDF Chief of the General Staff LTG. Aviv Kochavi met on Tuesday with US Centcom Commander General Kenneth McKenzie and commander of US Special Operations Command General Richard Clarke and other executives at Centcom headquarters in Tampa, Florida, and lauded the “unprecedented” collaboration between the two militaries.

Kochavi has been in the US since Sunday for meetings with the country’s defense establishment leadership to discuss several pertinent security issues. The most pressing issue on the table is Iran.

Tuesday’s meetings included a panel chaired by McKenzie and a series of intelligence and operational reviews.

Kochavi discussed with the US commanders the lessons of the IDF’s operational activity in the Middle East in recent months, the operational and intelligence cooperation between the armies, and new plans to expand operational cooperation.

As part of the learning processes that the armies carry out in relation to innovative fighting methods and dealing with terrorist armies, the Chief of Staff presented the main operational activities of the IDF during Operation Guardian of the Walls against Hamas in the Gaza Strip last month, emphasizing the innovations that were employed during the operation in fire and attack capabilities, accurate intelligence, and digital connectivity.

Kochavi stated that “the IDF’s operational cooperation with the US military is unprecedented in its quantity, and has reached peaks in quality.”

Iran is the “joint action target for the two armies, which is working to establish terrorist forces in many countries across the Middle East and continues to pose a regional threat in terms of nuclear, advanced weapons systems, ballistic missiles and the financing of terrorist armies,” he said.

“The current operational cooperation and the planned improvement agreed during the visit indicate the mutual commitment between Centcom and the IDF and will make it possible to deal more effectively with the diverse challenges,” he added.

The US military moved Israel from the US European Command’s (Eucom) area of responsibility to that of the US Central Command (Centcom) in January. Centcom focuses on the Middle East.

The Pentagon said that the change is “a sign of the changing political environment in the Middle East” following the signing of the Abraham Accords and “is part of unified command plan changes.”

Kochavi will end his trip to the US in talks with senior officials from academic research institutes and public opinion influencers as part of an extensive international advocacy effort.

He is then expected to visit the West Point US Army Military and return to Israel on Friday.

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