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The purpose of this work is to identify and discuss several dimensions which affect the effectiveness of the Palestinian Authority Security Forces in the field of security and counter-terrorism. The analysis will touch upon, in addition to technical and organizational aspects, also the historical, cultural and political background of the Palestinian society and the outcomes of the assistance provided by international actors, such as the United States and Italy. In doing so, it will be possible to better understand which are the main challenges faced by the Palestinian security system in a systematic way. There are two main conclusions to this research: 1) The Palestinian Authority Security Forces are still far from being considered a professional quasi-military corp; 2) Analyzing socio-political dimensions of the Palestinian case is fundamental in order to understand the environment from which the Palestinian security apparatus emerged and how it has evolved over the years.