moshav Kfar Hess
|Service/branch||Israel Defense Forces|
|Years of service||1970–2003|
|Rank||Major General (ret.) (IDF)|
|Commands held||Officers School
Infantry Corps (Israel)
|Battles/wars||Yom Kippur War
First Lebanon War
South Lebanon conflict (1982–2000)
|Other work||Head of National Security Council (Israel)
Senior research associate, Institute for National Security Studies
External advisor to Givot Olam Oil Exploration LP
Giora Eiland (born in 1952, in moshav Kfar Hess) is Major General (ret.) Israel Defense Forces. Eiland is former Israel's National Security Advisor. He is a senior research associate at the Institute for National Security Studies and holds an M.B.A. and B.A. in economics from Bar Ilan University.
Eiland joined the army in 1970, and served in the Paratroopers Brigade Battalion 890. He served in a variety of roles within the brigade: as platoon leader (1973 Battle of the Chinese Farm in the Yom Kippur War), an operations officer, company commander (1976 Operation Entebbe), vice-commander of a battalion (1978 Operation Litani), commander of 50 "Baselet" Airborne Battalion (1982 First Lebanon War) and reserve commander of the Paratroopers Brigade.
Following First Lebanon War Eiland served as commander of Infantry Officers School of the Chief Officer of Infantry Corps (Israel). In 1984 Eiland completed the Advanced Infantry Course at Fort Benning, Georgia, United States. After his return to Israel he was appointed as Operations Directorate officer in the Infantry Corps (Israel). In the years 1990-1992 he commanded the IDF Officers School (Training Base 1), and in the years 1992-1993 was the commander of the Givati Brigade.
At 1993 Eiland was appointed as the Chief Officer of Infantry Corps (Israel) in the rank of Brigadier General. In 1996 Eiland was appointed Head of Operations Division in Operations Directorate, and in 1999 he was appointed Head of Operations Directorate in rank of Major General. In this role he was involved in preparations for the IDF withdrawal from Lebanon and also in conflict with the Palestinians ( Second Intifada ). In 2001 he was appointed head of the Planning Directorate. Still an army officer, Eiland took part in the political process, during the Israeli–Palestinian Peace Process and was appointed to accompany the Foreign Minister Shimon Peres, in his talks with Yasser Arafat. Eiland also represented the Israeli security forces in talks with U.S., Palestinian and other officials. In 2003, with the end of his term in the Planning Directorate, Eiland rejected an offer to become IDF attache in Washington, and retired from the army after 33 years of service.
National Security Council
Eiland left the Planning Directorate and the IDF to accept, in January 2004, Sharon's offer that he head the National Security Council (NSC). Eiland was the fourth NSC head in the six years of the Council existence, previous - David Ivri, Uzi Dayan, and Ephraim Halevy - could not penetrate the walls around the Prime Minister office. However, contrary to Dayan and Levy, whose terms were marked by worsening relations with Prime Minister Sharon, Eiland had a constructive working relationship with the PM, despite their practical disagreements.
In early 2003, a few weeks after his retirement from the army and arrival to the NSC, Eiland became aware of Sharon's disengagement initiative - at that stage the initiative had more limited objectives in the Gaza Strip and broader in the West Bank. Eiland agreed that a political initiative was needed, but objected to both the content of Sharon's proposal and to the procedure for preparing and presenting it. In 2004 Eiland took part in drawing up the disengagement plan in close consultations with US Advisors among them National Security Council Middle East Advisor Elliott Abrams. Eiland shuttled with Ariel Sharon's Chief of Staff, between Washington and Jerusalem to hammer up successive drafts. It was Eiland 's initiative to establish Disengagement Authority and set a realistic schedule program. The plan, as adopted by the Israeli Government and the Knesset, is largely a result of Eiland's formulation. During the year 2005 there were reports in the media about Eiland's criticism of the policy and national security decision-making process. After conclusion of the implementation of the disengagement plan, Eiland informed Prime Minister that he had exhausted his ability to influence the process and he decided to resign from NSC. On 1 June 2006 he was replaced as head of NSC by former deputy head of the Mossad, Ilan Mizrahi.
After retiring from the Council
In 2010 Eiland headed team of experts examining the preparations and in the actual boarding of the Gaza flotilla raid. Eiland presented the report to the chief of staff, Gabi Ashkenazi on July 12, 2010.
On May 29, 2011, Eiland said on Kol Yisrael Radio that in his view it would be better for Israel to let the next flotilla - expected to set out in late June 2011 - get through to Gaza, provided that the Government of Turkey would be willing to take responsibility for the flotilla, inspect all ships and make sure they were not carrying arms.
- Sheizaf, Naom (2010-09-24). "The IDF is silent". Haaretz. Retrieved 18 October 2010.
- Major General Giora Eiland, IISS, 25 February 2005
- Giora Eiland Senior Research Fellow, The Institute for National Security Studies, Tel Aviv
- Eiland, Giora (2009-05-18). "Analysis: Why Netanyahu and Obama see key issues differently...". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 18 October 2010.
- Dagoni, Ran (1 June 2011). "Yair Shamir: I can privatize Israel Aerospace Industries". Globes (Washington). Retrieved 1 December 2011.
- Fields Of Fire, by Matt Rees/Gaza City, TIME, December 10, 2000
- Inside Track / Ready for the next Entebbe? Haaretz October 19, 2010
- The Sharon Unilateral Disengagement Plan Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. 33, No. 4 (Summer, 2004), pp. 85-107
- Maj-Gen (res.) Eiland presents conclusions of examination team
- Giora Eiland