'Chariots of Fire' drill delayed until 2022

Large scale drill was postponed due to the outbreak of and Gaza conflict

IDF soldiers are seen taking part in an exercise simulating a rescue mission behind enemy lines. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
IDF soldiers are seen taking part in an exercise simulating a rescue mission behind enemy lines.
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kohavi has postponed the large-scale Chariots of Fire exercise to the first half of next year, the military announced Monday.
The four-week-long drill was postponed to allow the IDF time to analyze the operational lessons that emerge at the end of debriefings and the investigation into Operation Guardian of the Walls, the IDF said. The investigation and learning process will take place in the coming months, it said.
The drill was supposed to take place in May but was delayed due to the outbreak of fighting with Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip.
“In addition, it will be possible to examine additional capabilities that are expected to be absorbed into the various IDF units as part of the continued implementation of Momentum,” the multiyear plan, the IDF said.
Thousands of regular and reserve soldiers were set to take part in the drill, together with the Air Force, the Navy, the Defense Ministry, the National Emergency Authority, the Foreign Ministry and other bodies.
The drill will simulate a multifront war against Israel’s enemies, including urban warfare, and will hold maneuvers overseas to simulate operating behind enemy lines in new and unknown terrain that simulates combat in the North.
The goal of the drill is to improve the readiness of the military and the connections and communications between all branches, from the highest officer to the soldier on the frontlines. It also aims to improve the IDF’s and civilian bodies’ abilities to transition from routine to a full emergency scenario with multiple areas that are constantly evolving.
A “cabinet” will also be established to simulate the political echelon that would be an active partner in the decision-making process during the war month. The cabinet is made up of former military officers in reserve.
According to the IDF, the drill is unique and unprecedented in scope and will enable the army to maintain a high level of readiness in an ever-changing region. It aims to improve the military’s capabilities in an intense, multifront and prolonged war on all its borders.