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Aman (אמ"ן) is the Hebrew abbreviation for the Israel Defence Forces' (IDF) Directorate of Military Intelligence (אגף המודיעין), Israel's central, overarching military intelligence. Aman was created in 1950, when the Intelligence Department was spun off from the IDF's General Staff. Aman is an independent service, and not part of the ground forces, navy or the Israeli Air Force. It has a staff of 7,000 personnel (1996 estimate).

Head of Aman

The head of Aman is the highest intelligence officer in the IDF and engages in intelligence decision and policy-making at the same level as the heads of the Shin Bet and the Mossad: together, they form the three highest-ranking, co-equal heads of the Israeli Intelligence Community, focusing on the military, domestic (including the Palestinian territories), and foreign intelligence fronts respectively.

On June 10, 2005, the IDF's Chief of Staff, Lieutenant General Dan Halutz, in a move viewed as surprising, announced that Major General Aharon Zeevi-Farkash would be replaced by Major General Amos Yadlin. Yadlin, currently the IDF's military attaché in Washington, D.C., was a combat pilot, former head of the Air Intelligence Squadron, and Halutz's deputy. Yadlin was appointed as Aman Director on January 5, 2006, with Zeevi-Farkash having served an extended term.


Aman consists of the following subordinate and professionally subordinate units:

Staff units

* The Intelligence Corps
* The Collection Department

Collection units

* Unit 8200
* The Hatzav Unit
* The Visual Intelligence Branch
* The Mapping Unit
* The HUMINT Branch


* The Research Department

Information security

* The Information Security Department
* The Military Censor [Part of Aman, but an entirely independent unit, not subordinate to any military or political level, only to parliamentary and judicial oversight]

Other units

* The Supervision Department
* The External Relations Department
* Sayeret Matkal

Professionally subordinate units

* Air Intelligence Directorate: the intelligence unit of the Israeli Air Force
* Naval Intelligence Department: the intelligence unit of the Israeli Sea Corps
* Field Intelligence Corps: the intelligence unit of GOC Army Headquarters
* The intelligence units of the Regional Commands: Central, Southern and Home Front Commands

Roles and jurisdictions

Modash: IDF's newest corps.

The IDF's Intelligence Corps (חיל המודיעין), abbreviated as Haman and headed by a Brigadier General, has been detached from Aman since the Yom Kipur War, but remains under its jurisdiction.

In April 2000, the newest IDF corps was founded (the IDF's fifth land corps), the Field Intelligence Corps (חיל מודיעין השדה), abbreviated as Modash (מוד"ש). It was designed to fulfill some of Aman's former combat intelligence functions, and is also headed by a Brigadier General. Unlike Haman, however, Modash falls under the operational jurisdiction of the GOC Army Headquarters, abbreviated as Mazi (מז"י), and currently headed by Major General Yiftach Ron-Tal (as of June 10, 2005, outgoing: to be replaced by Major General Benny Gantz, outgoing head of GOC Northern Command). It still falls under Aman's professional jurisdiction however.

In 1976, according to the Lexicon of National Security, some of Aman's principal roles consisted of:

1. Intelligence evaluation for security policy, military planning and 'fluid security policy,' and the dissemination of intelligence to IDF and governmental bodies.

2. Field security at the level of the General Staff (today, Matkal: מטכ"ל), and the training and operation of field security in general (all levels).

3. The operation of military censorship.

4. Direction and operation of the 'Collection Agencies'.

5. Drawing maps; providing the direction and supervision for the dissemination of maps.

6. The development of 'special measures' for intelligence work.

7. The development of intelligence doctrine in the realms of research, collection, and field security.

8. Staff responsibility for military attachés overseas.


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