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IDF Col. (ret.) Itai Shapira

IDF Col. (ret.) Itai Shapira joined JINSA’s Gemunder Center for Defense and Strategy as a Distinguished Fellow in December 2019.

Colonel Shapira served in the IDF for 26 years, retiring in 2019, concluding an accomplished career in various intelligence analysis and management roles in the Israeli Defense Intelligence (IDI).

Throughout his career, Colonel Shapira served in various intelligence roles on the tactical, operational and strategic level – including many roles in the General Staff – where he contributed to strategic decision making. He is an accomplished expert on Middle Eastern issues, and also on intelligence and analytical methodologies.

In his last positions, Colonel Shapira served as the Deputy Head of the Research and Analysis Division (RAD), Israel’s main defense analytical agency, for three years – where he was responsible for managing and overseeing all the analytical products of the IDI, and also for setting analytical methodologies and managing international partnerships. He was responsible for analysis and production of the most sensitive intelligence in the IDI, relating to all arenas and various issues.

Colonel Shapira also served for one year as a project lead for conceptualizing a dramatic transformation – intended to change the process, product and organization of the Israel’s Defense Intelligence. In this role he combined theoretical knowledge with practical experience, assisting the leadership of the IDI in creating and implementing a revolutionary vision.

Prior to these assignments, Colonel Shapira served as the Head of a Department, a Branch and a Sector in the Research and Analysis Division – where he led regionally-focused analytical processes and products. He also served as an intelligence officer (G2) of a brigade and a division – providing tactical and operational support to commanders on the field.

Colonel Shapira holds a B.A (magna cum laude) in Economics and Philosophy, and an MBA, from Tel-Aviv University. He is a graduate of the Israeli National Defense College (INDC). He has published articles relating to strategy and to intelligence on Ma’arachot, IDF’s professional journal, and on Intelligence and National Security, the leading international journal for intelligence studies.

Publications

How to Limit Iranian Freedom of Action
Drone Strike Spillover: Why the Assassination of Suleimani Could Create a Crisis for Israe...
Escalation and Deterrence in Syria