(May 31, 2019 / JNS) A group of 40 U.S. military cadets and their officers landed at Ben-Gurion Airport on Thursday for the latest phase of a two-week strategic tour of Poland and Israel organized by Our Soldiers Speak (OSS), an American-based nonprofit dedicated to educating students and academics from around the world about Israel and its security realities.
After visiting significant sites in Holocaust history during their time in Poland, the cadets have now embarked on an immersive journey into Israeli society through June 11.
The visiting delegation will receive high-level briefings from present and former policymakers and commentators across the political spectrum in the fields of security, strategy, international relations, law, politics, media, religion and technology.
One of the highlights of the Israeli leg of the trip—officially called the Israel Strategy and Policy Tour (I-SAP)—will be a meeting with U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman on June 10.
The cadets are also set to meet with Maj. Gen. Noam Tibon (res.), former commander of the Israel Defense Forces Northern Formation; Judge Daphne Barak-Erez of the Israeli Supreme Court; Ambassador Arthur Kroll, deputy director general of the Israeli Foreign Ministry; and Maj. Gen. Gershon HaCohen (ret.), former commander of the IDF Staff and Command College.
The visiting service members hail from the West Point Military Academy, the Air Force Academy and the Virginia Military Institute. They are taking part in the fourth annual tour of I-SAP.
“This unparalleled experience enables American cadets to learn about hot-button issues and matters of utmost strategic importance in the Middle East firsthand,” said OSS founder and director Benjamin Anthony. “By forging bonds between the cadets and Israeli military officers, we are laying the groundwork for future understanding and productive interactions.”