The top lawman in a central Iowa county has just returned from a six-day fact-finding mission to the Middle East. Marshall County Sheriff Ted Kamatchus made the journey to Israel for what he calls an intelligence-gathering trip. Sheriff Kamatchus says the American-Israeli Education Foundation and the National Sheriffs Association cosponsored the trip for sheriffs from 10 states to go to Israel to interact with their intelligence, counter-terrorist, criminal justice and law enforcement groups — to compare notes and learn from each other.
Kamatchus says the trip taught him the importance of improving the communication gap between law enforcement agencies in the prevention of terror attacks. He says the gap is being bridged now better than it was before Nine-Eleven, though he says there’s still a ways to go and the U.S. will learn a lot from other countries.
Kamatchus says he was impressed with Israel’s emergency evacuation procedures. He says they were taken into Israeli hospitals and trauma units to see how prepared they are for handling mass evacuations and dealing with mass casualties. Kamatchus, the only Iowa sheriff on the trip, says he brought home a lot of information that’ll be useful down the road.