Israeli security experts are sharing counterterrorism tactics with American law enforcement officials, the Washington Post reports. They are briefing not only big-city cops but county sheriffs and police chiefs from such diverse locations as Gaithersburg, Md., and Knoxville, Tenn. Since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, agents from the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives along with police officials, sheriffs, and bomb technicians have been traveling to Israel for week-long lessons on terrorism. Classes include the history of Islamic fundamentalism and how to spot a suicide bomber. Seminars teach the Americans how to gather deeper intelligence, interrupt bomb supply lines, and discover where terrorists might hide explosives.
“Israel is the Harvard of antiterrorism,” said U.S. Capitol Police Chief Terrance W. Gainer. “No experience in my life has had more of an impact on doing my job than going to Israel,” said D.C. police commander Cathy Lanier, who heads the District’s special operations division and oversees the bomb squad and the emergency response team. Gainer traveled to Israel with D.C. Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey on a trip organized by Chuck Wexler, the executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum. Israeli bomb experts have, in turn, come to meet with Gainer’s officers. Ralph Morten, a Los Angeles police detective on the bomb squad and the Joint Terrorism Task Force, has conducted more than 1,000 training sessions for more than 25,000 police, fire and military personnel based on what he learned in Israel.