IDF officers to undergo anti-riot training ahead of Sept.

Two-day workshop will be held at Central Command’s base near Kiryat Gat, will be attended by all brigade, battalion and company commanders serving in the Central, Southern and Northern commands.

June 23, 2011 01:41
2 minute read.
Naksa Day protests at Kalandia

Naksa Day protests at Kalandia 311. (photo credit: LOAY ABU HAYKEL / REUTERS)

The army will hold a military-wide seminar next week to prepare commanders for violence expected to break out in the West Bank and along the borders following a Palestinian declaration of statehood in September.

The two-day workshop will be held at the Central Command’s Lahish Training Base near Kiryat Gat and will be attended by all brigade, battalion and company commanders serving in the Central, Southern and Northern commands.

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Over the two-day seminar, the commanders will receive intelligence briefings on what to expect if the PLO, of which the Palestinian Authority is a part, follows through on its planned unilateral declaration of statehood at the United Nations General Assembly.

Current IDF assessments refer to two possibilities: a large outbreak of violence, or sporadic large and nonviolent marches toward Jewish settlements or IDF checkpoints.

At the seminar, commanders will view a live simulation of how troops are expected to stop the so-called nonviolent protests that are expected to erupt.

The IDF is preparing for the possibility of large demonstrations throughout Judea and Samaria and along the borders with Syria and Lebanon, the likes of which it faced in May on “Nakba Day” and several weeks ago on “Naksa Day,” which mourned the Arab “setback” of Israel’s victory in 1967.

“We do not yet know if or when these protests could break out, but judging by recent events, we have to be prepared,” an IDF officer involved in the planning said on Wednesday, in reference to the recent violent protests along the Syrian border.

The workshop comes after the Ground Forces Command completed writing a new operational doctrine for containing the demonstrations and marches.

Brig.-Gen. Miki Edelstein, the IDF’s Chief Infantry and Paratroop Officer, began work on the doctrine several months ago. It dictates the way commanders are supposed to counter and contain march-protests.

In addition to watching the new training regimens and reviewing the new doctrine, the commanders will receive a briefing next week on the new riot gear the Ground Forces Command has purchased in recent months to help contain demonstrations.

The new technological systems include the “Scream,” a device that emits penetrating bursts of sound that leave rioters dizzy and nauseous, and the “Skunk Bomb,” which contains a foul-smelling liquid sprayed on rioters.

Some of these devices have been used in the past to disperse demonstrations against the security barrier in the West Bank.

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