The Arena | Uzi Arad

Uzi Arad

Professor of International Relations at the Lauder School of Government, Diplomacy, and Strategy at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, and founder of the Institute of Policy and Strategy. Former National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister and head of the National Security Council, as well as a high-ranking Mossad officer.

What is the most significant advantage Israeli diplomacy currently enjoys?

The global international deployment of Israel's embassies and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in the form of embassies with a strong presence, with an emphasis on key states and international organizations.

Photo: Adi Cohen-Tzedek

What is the greatest disadvantage that Israeli diplomacy suffers from?

The relatively low status and diminishing influence of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs within Israel’s foreign affairs and security system, and with the senior political echelon.

What do you think is the most important opportunity Israeli diplomacy currently has?

Recent developments in the international arena provide many new fields of operations, and require technological upgrading and professional modernization. These steps will advance Israel's international interests, enabling new types of networking while empowering the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and increasing its contribution.

What is the central challenge and/or threat Israeli diplomacy faces?

The fact that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is systematically inferior to other government ministries in formulating and influencing Israel’s foreign policy. Due to systematic neglect on the part of the political echelon in maintaining and empowering it, the Ministry is the weakest link in the Israeli diplomatic system. The result is not only difficulty or even failure in fulfilling Israel's international interests and goals, but also damage to the ability of Israel's security system to achieve its goals.


Diplomacy and security are interconnected. The primary failure leading to the weakness of Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs is that of the political echelon and the Prime Minister, who bear the responsibility for ensuring the functioning of the political-international branch of Israel's government.

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