An uphill battle

Despite some progress, most combat roles are closed to women in the IDF

By JUDITH SUDILOVSKY
July 26, 2015 15:50
IDF female soldiers

Female combat soldiers in the mixed-gender Caracal Battalion train in urban warfare.. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESMAN’S UNIT)

 
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Slight, strawberry-blond Maya Tiben, 19, has always been close to her twin brother, doing almost everything together. So, when it came time for their army service, she saw no reason to limit herself to roles considered traditional - ly “female.”

Standing in full combat gear in the dwindling gray of a late twilight among the rubble of a destroyed house where she and her platoon in the IDF’s Search and Rescue Unit have spent all day conducting a simulation exercise, she is tired and ready to call it a day, but has no regrets about the choice she made nor complaints about the work she is doing.

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