(photo credit: )
In an effort to bridge gaps discovered during the Lebanon war this past summer, the IDF has increased training regimens for all of its infantry and armored units. The Paratroopers Brigade, under the command of Col. Hagai Mordechai, became the first brigade, in its entirety, to halt all operations and for the first time in six years train together ahead of the next conflict.
During the war, the brigade lost nine soldiers alongside an additional 114 that were wounded. The brigade spent an extensive amount of time fighting Hizbullah in Lebanon and was responsible for eliminating the guerrilla group's elite unit in the southern Lebanese village of Bint Jbail.
Deputy Brigade commander Lt.-Col. Shmulik Kalimi told The Jerusalem Post Monday that the brigade's four battalions were currently conducting exercises that combined the use of infantry units, tanks and helicopters in warlike situations. The last time the brigade conducted exercises including all of its four battalions was in 2000, before the eruption of the second intifada.
"We need this training to be ready for future challenges," said Kalimi. "The entire brigade fought in Lebanon and the purpose of the exercises is to get ready for fighting that can erupt in the West Bank, in the South and in the North."
The 10 weeks of training will be wrapped up with an exercise involving the entire brigade scheduled for the next few weeks. Mordechai, who will oversee the exercise, was praised during the war as one of the only brigade commanders who entered Lebanon to fight Hizbullah alongside his soldiers and did not command operations from a war room back in Israel.