ATbar Dichter, Avi (MK)

Dichter, Avi (MK)

Chairman, Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Knesset, Former Minister of Public Security & Home Front Defense & Former Director of the ISA, Israel

He is the former Israel Minister of Public Security in Ehud Olmerts' government, and up until recently Minister of Home Front Defense under Prime Minister Netanyahu. Mr. Dichter is a former director of the ISA- Israeli Security Agency (also known as Shin Bet). He was a member of the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) from 2006-2012 and was Chairman of the sub-committee for Security Conception and Power Building. As a Minister Mr. Dichter was a member at the inner security cabinet until the elections of 2013.
Avi was born on Dec 14th 1952 in Israel to parents who survived the Holocaust. Mr. Dichter served in the Israel Defense Forces most elite commando unit (known asSayeret Matkal), and then (in 1974) joined the Shin Bet (ISA). He advanced up the ranks from air marshal to director of the agency. He held the latter position from 2000-2005, a period of significant Palestinian terrorist activity against Israel (known as the Al-Aqsa Intifada or Second Intifada).
Mr. Dichter is credited with restructuring the ISA to effectively deal with this challenge, leading to a dramatic reduction in the number of terrorist attacks and to a restoration of public morale and safety. During this period, Mr. Dichter also planned and improved both the defensive West Bank security barrier and the offensive tools and methods of operation to crack down on thousands of terrorists under Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. 
In the ISA, he served as head of the Southern District (Gaza Strip and Sinai), as head of the Security and Protection Division (in charge of protecting dignitaries, aviation, embassies and strategic information security) a position he took on immediately after the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, as deputy director of the agency, and as director (appointed by Prime Minister Ehud Barak).
As Minister of Public Security, Mr. Dichter formed the new modus operandi of signal intelligence (SIGINT) for the Israeli Police mainly to support a new national crime fighting unit similar to the FBI. During his term he put in place Israel's Witness Protection Program and signed cooperation agreements with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, with Canada's Ministry of Public Safety, Minister of Interior of Germany and with other countries in the E.U.
Mr. Dichter holds a BA in Social Sciences from Bar-Ilan University, and an Executive MBA from Tel Aviv University. He has been a research fellow at the Brookings Institute in Washington, D.C. He speaks Hebrew, Arabic and English.
Avi is married and has 3 children and 4 grandchildren.


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The Honorable MK Avi Dichter


The session was part of the ICT's 16th World Summit on Counter-Terrorism: "Unpuzzling Terrorism". MK Dichter spoke about the magnitude of the Iranian threat, claiming the country has aspirations to spearhead the Middle East and gain influence in all the various conflicts and groups active in the region. He notes that terrorism is increasingly transnational and religious-based and considerations such as "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" should be taken with a grain of salt.

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Deport the heads of Hamas


A unity government that includes a terrorist organization is a terrorist government.

First published in the Jerusalem Post

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Israel's Security Challenges


Mr. Avi Dichter discusses Israel's security challenges in RICE university in Houston.

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