This year’s August round of enlistment of IDF draftees began on Sunday, as
soon-to-be soldiers destined for the Golani Brigade gathered at collection
points ahead of their induction.
The draft was accompanied by a figure
indicating a drop in the motivation among draftees for service in combat units.
According to questionnaires filled out by the draftees, some 70.3 percent of
draftees wish to serve in combat units – a drop from 73% in 2012, and 76.2% in
The figures for combat service motivation have fluctuated over the
years. The IDF’s target is to maintain the range in the 70 to 76%
Maj. Benny Meir, commander of the training school for recruits in
the Givati Brigade, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that he was not worried by
”Each generation of soldiers is getting better over the
years. The issue of statistics is not significant. I’m getting quality
people who are very highly motivated,” Meir said.
“They have high
awareness and are much smarter than members of my generation when they were
drafted,” Meir said. “Their [the new recruits’] understanding is higher, and
they can carry out multiple functions at the same time.”
Meir said the
recruits he was seeing are highly patriotic. “You can see the Zionism in their
eyes. They want to contribute. This is a boost for me.”
school commander noted that statistics can vary over the years and do not
represent a full picture.
“The results can change depending on how the
question is asked. I go on what I see with my own eyes. We have the very highest
level of soldiers,” he added.
The Givati infantry brigade has been at the
forefront of combat missions in recent years, Meir stressed. “Every brigade has
its own DNA. What makes Givati unique is its ability to develop
commanders,” he added.
Givati has been key to missions in the North and
South, and operates in a range of arenas, from the border with Gaza to the Golan
“I am sure Givati will be the first to lead [in any future
mission],” Meir said.
The brigade’s training base, located at Ktziot,
near the Egyptian border, is where recruits sleep in tents and get a thorough
field education, Meir added.
Conditions are tough, and there’s a scarcity
of shade and water – all factors that help prepare the soldiers for battle, the
According to figures released by the IDF on Sunday,
42.2% of draftees expressed a preference for serving in infantry units.
rise in the number of female combat soldiers was also noted this
The head of the IDF’s Human Resources Branch, Maj.-Gen. Orna
Barbibai, said: “The security challenges that stem from instability in our area
strengthen the need for a strong military, based on a significant and prominent
human advantage. As the nation’s army, the IDF gives expression to all sections
of Israeli society, and provides everyone with an equal opportunity to
contribute and have an influence.”