Ron Schleifer, teacher of psychological warfare at Ariel University, is considered one of Israel’s foremost experts in the field. This, he says, is because too few others are devoted to the study of psychological warfare. Though the Ariel Research Center for Defense and Communications (RCDC), the institution he founded, is the only one working on the cruicial topic of PO (psychological operations), Shleifer receives no assistance from either the university itself or the Israel government. This is quite revealing, considering that Israel is constantly engaged in this type of warfare from Johannesburg to Oslo, and from Washington DC to Jakarta. And so it is that, despite his important contribution to Israel’s defense, Schleifer is in financial debt, and the future of the RCDC hangs in the balance. But, while Schleifer needs all the help he can get, we didn’t meet to commiserate. I wanted to learn from him whether or not PO is used by Israelis against other Israelis, whether or not the internal strife characterizing Israel today is by design. We’ll get to it one step at a time.
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