Herzi Halevi
Herzi HaleviIDF Spokesperson's Unit

IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi spoke on Wednesday at the graduation ceremony of the National Security College and said that a deal that would see the release of the hostages being held by Hamas in Gaza “embodies the basic values required for an exemplary society and a society that values life.”

“The security challenges are complex and greater than ever. Iran seeks to advance its nuclear capabilities and is arming militaries and terrorist organizations that fight against us. The changing threats require adjustments in security perceptions. In the current campaign, we are doing this by adapting strategy, systemic thinking, and combat methods, providing a quality response through stratagem, partnerships, and innovation to a variety of threats across seven fronts simultaneously,” said Halevi.

“Strategy looks at all fronts together, and through it, we define the objectives for each front; systemic thinking translates the objectives into the concept by which we operate, and at the tactical level, we plan and implement,” he added.

Halevi noted, “We have always aimed for a quick defeat of regular enemy militaries, to eliminate threats and release reservists as soon as possible back to their essential civilian roles in the state's development. The current war is different. It is a war against a destructive extremist idea, originating in Iran and its ambitions for the destruction of Israel, with its proxies extended around us. Defeating terrorist organizations that hold ideologies of annihilation, sanctify death, and hide among dense populations, requires fundamental and sometimes prolonged campaigns, which must be managed with determination, sophistication, patience, and a comprehensive view of military, civilian, and national resources.”

“We defeat the Hamas ideology by dismantling its military and governmental mechanisms. Victory will be achieved through long-term regional and global partnerships, with those who understand that Iran and its proxies threaten not only us but also them,” the Chief of Staff said.

“Victory will be expressed through a combination of military actions and the civilian rehabilitation of the western Negev—for example, the quality of the defense we provide and its impact on the prosperity of Sapir College, connecting security and education,” he added.

Commenting on the situation in northern Israel, Halevi said, “In the north, a campaign is being waged against Iran's strongest branch in the region. We are inflicting heavy damage on Hezbollah every day, which is only a fraction of our capability. We are determined and ready to restore the quiet, push the threat away from the border, and safely return the residents to their homes—the decision on the future of the northern front is in our hands.”

“It will be made with strategic thinking and systemic planning, navigating the military achievements according to the strategic compass. The military action is an essential component of the strategic endeavor, but equally important is the national societal campaign for our shared values. Disputes among us give hope to our enemies, while solidarity and cohesion are keys to our national security, now and in the future.”