Alwaght- The Israeli army is suffering heavy losses on the front of quality and is facing a crisis in its field units, the Israeli Haaretz daily reported on Saturday.
“The worrisome data was presented to the General Staff almost a year ago, but the conclusion has not previously been made public: The Israel Defense Forces is facing a crisis of quality in its field units and, even more troubling, among its junior officer corps, because it is finding it increasingly difficult to recruit combat soldiers from certain parts of the population,” the report says.
The report says the higher ranking officials of the army are suffering undermined quality “since the army recruits officers mainly from among its rank-and-file combat soldiers”.
The daily quotes the behavioral science unit of the army saying the more and more “recruits who score highest in the army’s quality assessments, and especially those from wealthier towns and neighborhoods, prefer to join technology units, whose prestige is growing, rather than combat units”
Israeli army has and its field units in particular, have been humiliated during their two latest wars against both Lebanese and Palestinian resistance movements where they failed to realize their declared goals despite equipment and number superiority.
“The problem is especially severe in field units that are considered “dull,” like the armored, engineering and artillery corps,” the article explains.
“But the fact that the army itself has put greater emphasis on its technological units in recent years, coupled with the fact that serving in these units is often personally beneficial to the draftees, means that more and more outstanding recruits have been going into technology units rather than combat units. This is one of the main challenges with which the new head of the IDF’s manpower directorate, Maj. Gen. Moti Almoz, will have to contend” the report says.
The article goes on to say that the mentioned process has resulted in less soldiers from upper-middle classes to enter the combat units of the regime and “consequently, members of these groups are gradually disappearing from combat units”.
“One result that has already become evident is that the quality of command in some of these units is declining, because the army simply has fewer high-quality recruits from whom to select future officers,” the article concludes.
It also refers to the army’s statistics about recruits’ motivation saying that “the latest figure, from November 2016, was the lowest in three years, at 69.8 percent … but the army doesn’t publish the more important numbers, which show an ongoing erosion of the combat ethos among recruits from strong socioeconomic backgrounds”.