image Photo: IDF

IDF honors reserve units for excellence

17 IDF reservist units were hailed for excellence and 2 others were awarded special assessment certificates for outstanding performance over the past year during both routine and emergency activities.

By Erin Viner

The ceremony at the official residence in Jerusalem of Israeli President Isaac Herzog was also attended by the members of the reservists’ families, Minister of Defense Benny Gantz and IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Col. Aviv Kochavi.

“There are no other Israeli phenomena that well illustrate our uniqueness, both as a society and as a country, like the reserve service,” said President Herzog, emphasizing that, “The ability to break away from routine, family, work and school, and put on a uniform is wonderful and worthy of great appreciation.”

The Israeli leader said it was a “privilege” to recognize the “dedicated hearts” and “inspiring readiness” of the service personnel on behalf of a grateful nation.

Noting that unfortunately that, “IDF soldiers – including our dear reservists – are repeatedly attacked by an ‘industry of fabrications, films and propaganda’ in which there is no shred of truth or integrity, and shallow and false investigations,” President Herzog stressed that, “The State of Israel stands and will continue to stand firm, together with the reservists, who are our beautiful face as a people and as a State, against the attacks that seek to discredit and blacken them, and are based on hatred and nothing more. ”

Addressing the outstanding units, President Herzog added that, “Just as excellence is not a matter of chance, but a product of values, of adherence to the mission and of the ability to demand the best from yourself, so does excellence. In the appreciation given to you today lies a great expectation from you: to continue to lead, to continue to invest, and to be a role model and an example to the entire nation. Thank you and your subordinates for giving meaningfully for all of us, thank you for the leadership, professionalism and ability to enlist, and thank you for proving to many, what are the materials from which a true mission is made. ”

Israeli reservists make a significant and integral contribution toward the IDF’s ability to fulfill its mission and defeat the enemy in wartime.

The following data about the reserve system was released by the IDF:

  • 17% of the country’s citizens within the required age range perform reserve duty.
  • 120,000 reservists are considered to be on active duty (representing 4% of those who serve).
  • Volunteer reservists make up 11% of the reserve array (people who continue to perform the reserve voluntarily, having already passed the age of reserve exemption).
  • The cities from which the largest number of reservists reside are Tel Aviv-Yafo, Jerusalem and Rishon Lezion.
  • The proportion of women among reservists has risen by 17% over the past decade.
  • The leading command in the number of reserve officers is the Northern Command.

“Although not all the people are in the reserve, all the people are behind the reservists,” remarked Defense Minister Gantz.

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Kochavi hailed the “professionalism and dedication at the highest levels by those performing reserve duty, adding that “The fact that serving in the reserve is not a matter of course and is not part of natural world order. We must continue to work to increase the sense of appreciation and fairness towards all servants and we must emphasize the prestige of service in general and reservists in particular.”

The Israeli military’s top commander went on to describe the reservists as “the best expression of the IDF’s ‘army of the people, for the protection of the people, which embodies the good of the people’. “The people. I salute you, and I am proud of you. Continue to excel, rise and succeed.”

The outstanding units were selected by a committee chaired by the Commander of the Maneuvering Unit and the Northern Corps, General Saar Tzur. In addition to those chosen, the committee agreed to award special assessment certificates to two other military units.

These are the IDF Units Recognized for Excellence:

Artillery Battalion 8140 of the Bashan formation in the Northern Command – the battalion is leading in its competence and readiness for war. The battalion deals with the development of manpower throughout the year and develops the chain of command that will form the core of the next generation of commanders. The battalion is highly qualified and holds regular training, preparations and learning sessions in order to improve and develop its skills.

The 5280th Engineering Corps Battalion of the Galilee Division in the Northern Command – The battalion is endowed with quality and professional commanders who perform any task under any conditions. The battalion promotes and expresses an atmosphere of action and belonging that is also reflected in activities outside the period of active service.

The 9238th Battalion of the Mapatz Division in the Northern Command – the battalion is ranked first in the order of priority for recruitment due to being a fast battalion – in leading processes, caring for people, initiatives and full cooperative action throughout the year. The battalion is cohesive and characterized by seriousness, a desire for professionalism and caring.

The 9263rd Infantry Battalion of the Mapatz Division in the Northern Command – In the past year the battalion has performed a number of exercises and is highly qualified for any task. In the divisional exercise and excelled in the Raf Patzan reserve test.

The 8130 Infantry Battalion of the Ga’ash Division in the Northern Command – one of the most prominent and leading features of the battalion is the operational flexibility that is reflected in preliminary planning and professional and accurate execution in every field. Over the past year the battalion has been a partner in defending the Samaria Brigade sector in operational employment which on its last day encountered a force from the battalion in a short-range terrorist in which the force operated professionally.

The 910th Infantry Battalion of the Judea and Samaria Division in the Central Command – The battalion is characterized by highly motivated soldiers who are characterized by the quality of their function and dedication to the battalion.

The 7035th Infantry Battalion of the Judea and Samaria Division in the Central Command – the purpose of the battalion is to protect the Binyamin sector in an emergency, demonstrating high standards in all its operations.

The 6655th Infantry Battalion of the Esh Division in the Central Command  6655th Battalion is a leading battalion in the 55th Chod HaChanit (Spearhead) Brigade, consisting of three infantry battalions.

The 8208th Infantry Battalion of the Gaza Division in the Southern Command – the battalion places great emphasis on conducting in-depth training and developing of its commanders.

The Northern District 895th Rescue Battalion in the Home Front Command – the battalion is responsible for the “finger of the Galilee” sector and its role is to save lives and help the population. The battalion demonstrated initiative, professionalism and excellence during operations over the past year.

The 926th Battalion of the Southern District of the Home Front Command – the 926th Battalion participated in responding to the residents of the city of Ashdod during the Operation Guardian of the Walls conflict with Gaza terror groups, as well as responding to civilian medical assistance to the challenges during the Coronavirus pandemic. The battalion is highly prepared for any future operational mission, reflected a high level of training.

7220th Battalion in the 11th Regiment of the Bazak Division in the Ground Forces a reserve battalion that performs an intensive training routine and has high standards in its professionalism and level of talent. The battalion has carried out a large number of reserve trainings in the past year and is currently conducting operational employment in Judea and Samaria.

123rd Squadron of the Air Force – The squadron’s reserve officers are a key component in its ability to meet its missions in routine and combat. The squadron’s achievements in the past year are largely based on the support and work of the reservists in it.

Unit 669 in the Air Force – The reserve members of this unit participate in its operational activities in routine, Bambam and emergencies and constitute a significant component in every operational task, from the planning level to the execution level.

Squadron 916 of the Israeli Navy The Squadron is an active partner in the operational routine in the Sea Arm. The reserve commanders are also an essential part of the training of new commanders, as a center of knowledge for present commanders, as well as in carrying out operations routinely in routine and emergency situations, in light of their extensive experience. The reservists in the platoon are harnessed, perform many reserve days and report for duty at any time.

376th Battalion in the Cyber Defense Division of the Communication and Computer Sector ICT Battalion of the General Staff, which is entrusted with the multipliers of the ICT strategic power. The reservists are an integral part of the battalion’s force building, the training and exercises routine and the operational contribution to the IDF and the State of Israel.

The Investigation Division of Unit 504 in the Intelligence Division – This unit is in charge of gathering intelligence and carrying out operations using human sources. In emergencies and routines, the unit operates an investigation system that extends from the battalion level to the General Staff level.

Certificates of appreciation:

Alon Headquarters of the Home Front Command – This unique unit engages in a national mission of great importance to save lives, operated by committed and dedicated reservists. Recent operations include handling the public campaign to combat the Coronavirus pandemic, as well as leading assistance to the Ministry of Absorption and Immigration to bring Ukrainians fleeing the war in their country to Israel.

Unit 8960 of the Transportation Center in the Technology and Logistics Division – The purpose of the battalion, which consists of dedicated reservists consisting mainly of volunteers, is to transport people and troops in cooperation with the Ministry of Transportation as well as weapons and tanks to warehouses.