The IDF is strengthening infantry units by expanding the use of its advanced armored personnel carrier, dubbed Namer (Tiger), to the Givati Brigade in addition to Golani units already using the vehicle.
“After extensive trials, by the end of 2020 the entire brigade will be operating the Namer,” the IDF said. It is also in the process of being integrated into the Carmeli reserve brigade, which is part of the Northern Command.
Wider use of the Namer will offer many operational advantages, such as the ability to move troops to targets, including urban areas, where they can capture and hold territory, the IDF said.
“The absorption of the Namer is a significant step for the Givati Brigade as a leading brigade,” said Givati commander Col. Dado Bar-Khalifa, adding that “the advantages of the Namer will enable the brigade’s forces greater operational effectiveness.”
Givati infrastructure will be renovated to accommodate the new APC and changes will be made to the training exercises for the brigade, such as an emphasis on combat.
The Namer is based on the platform of a Merkava Mark IV tank and is outfitted with advanced technology. It is the IDF’s most fortified APC and is outfitted with the Trophy anti-tank missile protection system
also installed on Merkava.
Designed to detect and neutralize incoming projectiles, the Trophy system has four radar antennas and fire-control radars to track incoming threats, such as anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) and rocket propelled grenades. Once a projectile is detected the Trophy system fires a shotgun-type blast to neutralize the threat.
The Trophy Active Protection System (APS), developed by Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aircraft Industries’ Elta Group, has been installed on Israel’s Merkava tanks since 2009 and is the only fully operational and combat-proven APS in the world.
The IDF has invested significant amounts of money into upgrading its capabilities in the three years since Operation Protective Edge in 2014, especially in the field of urban combat.
In October the Defense Ministry began a series of tests on an upgraded version
of the Namer to make it better suited for urban combat by fitted it for the first time with a turret armed with a 30 mm gun that can penetrate walls at a 60-degree angle or more.
“An APC equipped with a turret and cannon gives it an advantage during urban warfare,” stated Brig.-Gen. Baruch Matzliach, head of the Tank Program Administration. “The shortened cannon makes it more maneuverable and [gives it] the ability to provide firepower to infantry soldiers. It also lets infantry soldiers be more independent on the battlefield, with less dependence on other units to provide firepower.”
“The Namer is one of the best fighting weapons in the world and produced in Israel,” stated Ground Forces planning officer Col. Rami Abudraham. “The operation of the infantry brigades in Namer in general, and of the Givati Brigade in particular, is a complex process that will give Israel a very high level of operational capability.”