A dozen police chiefs from the United States have been touring Israel as guests of the Israel Police over the past week in an effort to learn from Israel’s experience with law enforcement and counter-terrorism.
“It is a counter-terrorism seminar, and the officers who have come out here to learn about how we have dealt with terrorism,” said Israel Police Spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld.
The 15 officers were taken all around Israel and met with top police officials, visited the scenes of previous terror attacks such as the Sarona Market, and received a briefing on counter-terrorism in Jerusalem’s Old City.
“They were tremendously impressed by our response time to active terror attacks,” said Rosenfeld. “They were also impressed how quickly information and intelligence is processed throughout one police service.”
Oren Segal heads the Anti Defamation League (ADL) Center on Extremism, which organized the visit, and said that the trip exposed the law enforcement officials to a different side of Israel.
“They are getting a different perspective of a country that deals with terrorism and extremism on a daily basis and an understanding about how that is approached,” said Segal. “Just having that first-hand knowledge instead of seeing it in interviews is important. None of the participants have been in Israel before and they can get an understanding of what goes on here just by walking the streets.”
The seminar lasted a week and was the twelfth of such events between Israeli and American law enforcement agencies.
Participants included the chief of the Orlando Police and the sheriff of San Bernardino County in California, both of whose jurisdictions have been hit hard by terror in recent months. A Jihadist couple killed 14 civilians in San Bernadino in December, and 49 people were killed in June in Orlando at a LGBT club.