Yesterday (Sunday), the Israeli Home Front Readiness Conference was held in the city of Modi'in.
The conference was led by the IDF Home Front Command in collaboration with the Federation of Local Authorities. The goal of the conference was to strengthen the cooperation and unity between the emergency management authorities across the country as well as increasing the public's awareness regarding various potential emergency scenarios and their impact on the Israeli home front.
Additionally, the conference discussed the joint work of the Home Front Command, government ministries, emergency management authorities and other parts of the IDF. The conference aimed to improve the IDF’s readiness for various potential emergency scenarios. Also presented was the importance of national preparation and resilience during an emergency, and the obstacles in the home front's readiness were presented, along with solutions required to overcome future challenges.
The conference was attended by the Chief of the General Staff, LTG Aviv Kohavi, the Minister of Interior, Mrs. Ayelet Shaked, the Commanding Officer of the Home Front Command, MG Ori Gordin, the Deputy Minister of Defense, Mr. Alon Schuster, the Head of The Federation of Local Authorities in Israel, Mr. Haim Bibas, the Commissioner of Israel's National Fire and Rescue Authority, Rav Tasfar Eyal Caspi, MDA Director General, Rav-Magen Eli Bin, the Head of the Operations Directorate (J3), MG Oded Basiuk and Head of the Operations Division of the Israel Police, Deputy Commissioner Sigal Bar Zvi.
The conference began with a lecture by the Commanding Officer of the Homefront Command, MG Ori Gordin, during which focused on the last two years of his command of the Israeli home front. In his lecture, MG Gordin addressed the importance of contact with local authorities, assistance from the Home Front Command in dealing with the outbreak of COVID-19 and the establishment of the “Alon” headquarters as a solution. MG Gordin also spoke about strengthening contact with government ministries and emergency management authorities, as well as the insights drawn from Operation "Guardians of the Wall”.
The lecture was followed by the first session of the day, which dealt with "The Civilian and the Next Emergency," during which two panels were held. The first panel discussed Israel's readiness for a severe earthquake, and the second discussed the community and civilians of Israel during the next emergency scenario.
The second session dealt with Operation “Guardians of the Wall” and preparations for the next campaign, during which an additional two panels were held. The first dealt with the subject of "What the home front learned from Operation "Guardians of the Wall", and the second with what the next campaign will look like in the Israeli home front.
Following the second session, an interview was held with the Minister of the Interior, Ms. Ayelet Shaked. The Chief of General Staff, LTG Aviv Kohavi, also held a lecture, during which he discussed the IDF's projections and readiness for a campaign with Lebanon. LTG Kohavi also spoke about the importance of morality and international law during a campaign, as well as the significance of the Israeli home front and its defense.
Commanding Officer of the Home Front Command, MG Ori Gordin said: "COVID-19 was our wake-up call. It made us realize that reality has changed and we too need to adapt. An additional war is taking place from within our home and we now have to face emergency scenarios from across the country while simultaneously providing solutions. We came to the conclusion that combining forces between government ministries, emergency management authorities, local authorities and civilians is the only way to ensure optimal real-time protection during future potential emergency scenarios. Modifying civilian behavior and assisting the internalization of individual responsibility for civilian protection also contributed greatly to the success of our goal.”
“The development of resilience and defensive capabilities during emergency scenarios can be attributed to eye-level communication. We were able to achieve this by reducing uncertainty, which led to continuous communication between civilians and us. This strategy significantly contributed in protecting the Israeli home front throughout the pandemic.”
“The most crucial task of each and every one of us is to consider how we can contribute to the overall success of our goal. Nine and a half million civilians depend on us, and I am confident that along with civilian assistance and joint emergency management authorities, we will be able to protect the Israeli home front as effectively as possible during future potential emergency scenarios."