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Despite sustaining heavy losses during the Lebanon war this past summer, the Golani Brigade was the number one choice for 30 percent of the new recruits that will enlist in the IDF over the coming week.
The number of new recruits vying for a single spot in the Golani infantry brigade was 2.7, compared to the 0.3 recruits who asked for each spot in the Armored Corps. In total, 69.5% of new recruits asked to serve in combat units as their first choice.
In second place after Golani was the Nahal Brigade, then Givati, Kfir and the Armored Corps in last place.
"Motivation is very high for the infantry units," explained a high-ranking officer in the IDF's Human Resources Department. "The new recruits want to be more in the field in combat units and less in tanks."
The March draft will also include close to 12 squads of hesder yeshiva students - soldiers who serve close to a year and a half in the IDF and spend three and a half years studying in yeshiva. Five of the squads will be made up of both yeshiva students and secular Israelis as part of the IDF's effort to incorporate the hesder soldiers into regular units.
The officer noted that the yeshiva heads agreed to send some of their students to the Engineering Corps, which was in desperate need of new recruits.
"The war united the nation," the officer said, basing his remark on draft statistics. "It is clear to everyone that they need to enlist and serve, and there haven't been any cases of recruits who are refusing to serve in the IDF."
Due to the low numbers among the new recruits who asked to serve in tanks, officers from the Armored Corps have spent the past few weeks going door-to-door to visit and talk to the draftees in an attempt to prepare them for their army service.