IDF kicks off major drill in the North

Military canceled large-scale drill last week due to tensions with Hezbollah

IDF soldiers on the Gaza border (photo credit: IDF SPOKESMAN’S UNIT)
IDF soldiers on the Gaza border
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESMAN’S UNIT)
The Israeli military kicked off an annual General Staff military exercise in the North on Sunday, simulating a multi-front war with Hezbollah.
The drill, dubbed Keystone and lasting until Wednesday, will see the participation of troops and reservists training in order to “improve the capability of the General Staff for war,” said the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit.
The Northern Command and the Home Front Command will coordinate and drill multi-arm scenarios in collaboration with the Air Force, Navy, Land, Intelligence, and Technology divisions, as well as the Logistics Division and the Computer and IT Directorate.
“As part of the exercise, different scenarios will be practiced focusing on collaborations, multi-system planning and emergency operations,” the military said.
The drill was postponed last week by the military over concern of a reprisal attack by Hezbollah against military targets. The IDF exercise that was planned for last week will instead be merged with this large-scale drill. “Reservist who were invited to the exercise have received a message with the updated times for their arrivals,” the IDF said at the time.
Despite the ongoing tensions, the military said the drill was planned in advance as part of the military’s annual training schedule.
The IDF has significantly stepped up the scope and frequency of its combat training in order to improve its readiness. As part of the IDF’s five-year Gideon plan, the military has returned to 17 weeks of consecutive training, an increase from the 13 weeks soldiers trained for over the past 15 years.
The IDF has been training in the Golan Heights for another war with Hezbollah, which since the Second Lebanon War has morphed into an army with more advanced and mobile weaponry.