The Honorable MK Gilad Erdan, Minister of Public Security, Strategic Affairs & Information, Israel
The session was part of the ICT's 16th World Summit on Counter-Terrorism: "Unpuzzling Terrorism". Minister Erdan noted that security agencies are finding it difficult to prevent lone wolfs attacks. Frustrated young people who use social networks and have easy access to basic weapons like knives are becoming a major concern in today's counter terrorism efforts. Because the Internet is mainstream and widely used, no country can deal with terrorism alone; cooperation is a key to success in countering terrorism.
Minister Erdan began his remarks by re-emphasizing the historical magnitude of the events of 9/11 and how, much like Rabin’s assassination, everyone remembers where they were when the attacks happened. He happened to be in New York, less then two km from the Twin Towers when the attacks occurred. Now, fifteen years after the attacks, which allowed for Israelis to empathize with Americans and vice versa, he finds it appropriate to be speaking at the opening ceremony of the counter-terrorism conference. MK Erdan stated that the events of 9/11 made the threat of terrorism, which had previously been limited to few specific places, more tangible for the rest of the world. Furthermore, he voice Israel’s concern over the fact that terrorist organizations are increasingly using the laws and values of our democracies against us. Similarly, he stated that the rules and definitions of terrorism have changed and nowhere is this change more evident than in the current wave of violence that Israel is experiencing.
Of the 200 attacks that have occurred, 68 were perpetrated by minors and 38 by women. Similarly, the spontaneous nature of lone-wolf attacks makes them extremely hard to predict. He argued that the enemy is becoming more unpredictable and therefore now, more then ever, resilience and the involvement of civil society are crucial. MK Erdan also spoke about some of the actions the state has been taking in order to address the changing nature of terrorism. He spoke about the importance of having citizens who have permits and proper training to carry weapons as well as the importance of involving senior officials from social media companies in the fight against terrorism. To conclude he spoke about the relationships between communities and the police and the importance of community policing. He also spoke about implementing body cameras on police as a way of increasing trust between them and the communities.