IDF to hold crash Arabic courses for infantry units

Learning Arabic will enable soldiers to obtain information in 'real-time.'

April 6, 2010 03:57
1 minute read.
IDF soldiers in action.

idf soldiers 311. (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


In an effort to improve real-time intelligence gathering capabilities, the IDF has decided to establish a crash course in Arabic for infantry soldiers so they can glean useful information from detainees during combat.

The course will be overseen by Military Intelligence and the Military Advocate-General’s Office.

The soldiers will study Arabic, Arab culture and basic interrogation methods. The skills are deemed critical by the IDF as it prepares for a possible new conflict with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

“This will enable soldiers to get information in the battlefield and not have to wait for Arab-speakers or Military Intelligence officers to arrive at the scene,” an officer explained.

Until now, Military Intelligence and the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) have been exclusively in charge of interrogating civilians and combatants detained by the IDF during operations, whether in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip or Lebanon.

Each infantry battalion will send a number of soldiers to the course.

One of the catalysts for the establishment of such a course was the number of complaints filed against the IDF following Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip last year. One example was a Military Police investigation that was opened against soldiers and junior commanders in the Paratrooper’s Brigade who were accused of abusing Palestinian detainees who they tried interrogating on the sidelines of the fighting in Gaza.

“Information obtained in real time can save lives,” the officer explained. “It can help the IDF locate weapons caches, weaponry and improvised explosive devices.”

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

U.S. President Donald Trump toasts with Japan's Emperor Naruhito
May 27, 2019
Iran’s regime relieved at Trump’s Japan mediation comments