Israel and its Army

From Cohesion to Confusion

By Stuart A. Cohen

© 2008 – Routledge

212 pages | 5 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415570114
pub: 2009-11-20
US Dollars$54.95
Hardback: 9780415400497
pub: 2008-01-24
US Dollars$158.00

About the Book

    The Israel Defense Force (IDF) plays a key role in Israeli society, and has traditionally been perceived not only as the guardian of national survival, but also as a 'people's army' responsible for the custody of national values. This volume analyses the circumstances currently undermining these perceptions, and explores both the changes occurring in Israel’s military framework, and their potential implications.

    The book highlights the influence exerted by massive shifts in both Israel's external strategic landscape and in the country's domestic and cultural environments, which have compelled the IDF to undertake major programmes of structural reform, technological adaptation and doctrinal revision. This book argues that these changes have lead the public to subject the armed forces and their conduct to unprecedented critical scrutiny. The way in which Israelis and their army resolve these tensions is of crucial importance not only for Israel, but for the Middle East as a whole.


'…a masterful study of the problems encountered by a military grappling simultaneously with a changing social and strategic context.'

Dr. Jonathan Spyer, Middle East Journal

Table of Contents

1. Frameworks of Analysis Section A: Changing Contexts 2. Forging a Relationship 3. The Changing Operational Landscape 4. The New Societal Setting Section B: New Dilemmas 5. A Smaller and Smarter IDF? 6. From Nation-Binder to Nation-Divider? 7. The Appropriate Application of Force? Section C: Prospects 8. Future Challenges and their Resolution

About the Author

Stuart Cohen is Professor of Political Studies at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, and Senior Research Associate of the BESA (Begin-Sadat) Center for Strategic Studies.

About the Series

Middle Eastern Military Studies

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Military / General
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Freedom & Security / General