Sunday, August 06, 2006

Israeli women reservists called up

This is something I've never heard of before - I wasn't even aware that women had direct combat duties in the IDF. Ynet reports on hundreds of women reserve soldiers who have been called up to fight Hizbollah on the northern border. "In the past four years, the IDF has started integrating women into the reserves. In the current war, there are women manning positions such as anti-aircraft officers, rescue officers, fighters in gunner units, snipers, and the list continues. Of all the women called up for duty in these days, about half are in combat battalions – 14 percent are fighters, 21 percent are medics, 11 percent are combat officers, and the rest are in intelligence. On the northern border, a writer for Ynet met Anat Bershkovsky and Efrat Kaufman, a non-commissioned officer in a mortar unit that is shooting at Lebanon. The two started their reserve duty as instructors for reserve soldiers on a training base, but very quickly found themselves on the Lebanese border shooting mortars at Lebanon."

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