Beginning in September 2000, Israel was confronted with an unprecedented wave of Palestinian violence in the form of suicide bombings, rocket attacks, and numerous other hostile acts. Since then, the conflict has undergone many evolutions, with both sides continuously changing their strategies and tactics. Although Palestinian attacks continue even during the current "lull" in the fighting, the relative calm provides an important opportunity to assess the war's many strategic and political lessons.
In this new Washington Institute Policy Focus, former Israel Defense Forces chief of staff Moshe Yaalon offers an inside look at Israel's evolving response to Palestinian violence. Drawing from his nearly four decades of military service, he discusses Palestinian tactics, analyzes Israel's shift from defensive to offensive measures, and outlines key principles of counterterrorism to help guide policymakers in Israel and elsewhere. As the United States and its allies struggle to deal with the "global jihad," sharing the lessons of Israel's war on Palestinian terrorism is more important than ever.