Israel has had to deal with terror attacks for many years and Dr Itay Gil‘s solemn message for New Zealand is “it’s coming to you”. This was the same message he gave to a group of leaders in Sydney in 1995 when some of those listening to him thought that Australia was immune and could learn little from the tiny Jewish nation.

More than two decades later, Australian emergency services are turning to Israel for training and the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service has identified “violent extremism” as the number one threat to New Zealand.

Dr Gil was an IDF captain and served in the special forces paratrooper brigade, after which he was chosen to join Israel’s elite counter-terror and hostage rescue team (Yamam). He became the chief close-quarters combat instructor for the unit and executive director for all training programs for the Israel border and undercover Police units. His company, Protect, now consults to civilians and government agencies across the world.

Dr Gil was recently in New Zealand offering training and workshops. He trained representatives of the NZ Police and defence forces as well as security professionals and has suggested that the NZDF are seriously considering updating their training program to incorporate Israeli methods that have been refined with experience.

Read more on the Israel Institute of New Zealand…