June 11, 2012
An address by Major General Gadi Shamni, the Israel Defense and Armed Forces Attaché to the United States & Canada kicked off JINSA’s Spring 2012 Board Meeting, held June 3-4 in Washington, DC. The Board of Directors also heard from Ohio State Treasurer and Iraq veteran Josh Mandel and Lieutenant General David Fridovich, USA (ret.), JINSA’s Director at the Gemunder Center for Defense and Strategies.*
Gen. Shamni briefed the Board on the current security situation surrounding Israel, which included analysis of Iraq, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt. Shamni was commander of the Central Command, which includes Jerusalem and the area of Judea and Samaria from 2007 to 2009 when he was appointed Attaché.
Mandel, a Marine Corps veteran who served tour tours in Anbar Province, Iraq, discussed his military service and his start in politics. He also spoke about the importance of energy independence to U.S. national security.
Finally, the Board of Directors heard from JINSA’s Director of Defense and Strategies, Lt. Gen. David P. Fridovich. Prior to his retirement in December 2011, Fridovich was Deputy Director of the U.S. Special Operations Command.
Fridovich spoke about his experiences on the recent JINSA Generals and Admirals Trip to Israel and how important this program is for the future of defense and national security relations between the U.S. and Israel. One of the lessons that became very apparent during the trip, he said, was that Iran is behind almost all of the security threats that Israel faces. He explained to the JINSA Board all that he and the group took away from this program and how the participants will use this information going forward. From their visit with Defense Minister Ehud Barak to the day the delegation spent in Jordan, Fridovich marveled at the high level access to people and information that JINSA provided the delegation.
On June 4, the Board visited the Pentagon for a full day of briefings as guests of the U.S. Special Operations Command. The day included a visit to the National Pentagon 9-11 Memorial.
*Lt. Gen. Fridovich is no longer the Director of Defense and Strategies at JINSA's Gemunder Center