Future Israeli Leaders in the Negev

Future Israeli Leaders in the Negev

The southern Israeli desert called the Negev

has been in the news this week.

Sadly, two lives were lost there,

and the details are still emerging.

On a recent trip to the Negev 

we passed dozens of Bedouin encampments

Beoudin along road in Negev

like this one along the roadside.

Thousands of Bedouins live in hundreds of homes like these

that just “popped up” along side the Negev roads.

But I would rather share a new, special “village” with you,

Army base in southern Israel Kiryat Ariel Sharon

an elite army training base named for Ariel Sharon.

Entering the grounds, a large

Kiryat Ariel Sharon negev

outdoor stadium is on the right side of road.

Near the entrance,

Negev army base shul

 one of three synagogues sits on the main square.

IDF base commanders

The commander of the base, Colonel Avi Motola,

says he feels more like a mayor, with a budget and services

for 10,000 soldiers who are on the training base.

Map of Negev army training base

A map of the base, larger than some Israeli cities.

Different army units training at Negev base

This slide shows the governing structure of the IDF and its branches

on this state-of-the-art consolidated training campus.

A convention center, pool, library and more are planned.

There are six dining rooms with huge kitchens to serve up meals.

New army base in Negev

This view from one central location

IDF Training base in negev

and another show the barren desert in background.

Desert lands take up a third of the country.

New infrastructure, such as roads, were built to benefit everyone.

Civilians work on the base, which helps the local economy.

The plan is for families to come and further develop

the surrounding Negev cities.

Inside the training center,

Room to train medics under conditions of battlefield

simulator rooms have sound and smoke

to prepare young soldiers for action.

Especially impressive are the areas to train medics.

Room to train medics in IDF Negev base

On the ground covered by a “blood” stained blanket

is a dummy with equipment around the walls.

The window on right lets medical teams be supervised.

Room to train medics

There are multiple rooms, reflecting the various terrains.

Training with artificial bodies and body parts

Medics training at new base in NEgev

helps prepare efficient medical response teams.

With the shorter attention-spans of new recruits,

plus shorter terms of service,

new means of more effective education are crucial.

Basic training is three weeks,

the special courses can last from 3 weeks to 14 months.

Simulators to teach driving in Negev army base

Young soldiers learn to drive on these simulators.

The large truck dashboard and weather conditions

are two factors which can be programmed.

New planted tress in army base in Negev

Outside were new plantings to landscape the campus.

IDF soldiers lying on ground relaxing in Negev base

One journalist on our trip commented on the relaxed

atmosphere of the base, so different to army life in China.

Soldier talking on phone in Negv

This is a perfect spot to sit in the shade and talk on phone.

Female IDF soldiers walking in army base with backpacks

As more young women are serving in IDF,

it was impressive to see their presence on the base.

Hope you enjoyed this brief look

Field in name of Ariel Sharon in Negev

into the training of new officers for the IDF.

Oh, the last words as you exit,

Go in Peace says sign at exit of new army base Ariel Sharon

Go in peace.

Special Shabbat Shalom for Tisha B’Av

In the month of Av,

especially on Tisha B’Av,

terrible things have happened.

Jerusalem was destroyed,

but the Jewish people have returned.

Har Herzal sign for military cemetery

The military cemetery on Mt. Herzl,

graves at Har Herzl Cemetery

is filled with graves of fallen IDF soldiers,

fallen IDF soldier from Ethiopia

their birthdays celebrated with photos.

military cemetery graves at Har Herzl

So many rows of young people who will not age.

Michael Levin lone soldier killed in action in second lebanon war

Michael Levin z”l is one lone soldier

from the United States who died ten years ago,

military cemetery grave stone

and there too many more to mention.

Yahrtzeit for Michael Levin at Har Herzl military cemetery

As the memorial service for Michael Levin ended,

memorial service at Har Herzl soldier stands near grave stone

another began nearby.

When a soldier dies in battle,

it is said he has “fallen.”

Falling is the precursor to getting up.

There are too many soldiers who fell too young,

 but have left us with a mission and legacy to fulfill.

We must get up and carry on where they left off.

Michael Levin LSC outside of Har Herzl cemetery

May their memories be for a blessing.

שבת שלום

Shabbat Shalom.

New IDF Soldiers

With the start of 2011, the frequency of

 kassams, missiles and kaytushas coming from Gaza is increasing;

ten fell in the first week of the new year, with more each day.

There have been injuries and one Israeli soldier was killed.

As many Israelis do not visit Jerusalem,

after induction into the army new recruits are brought to the Old City

and to the Kotel, the Western Wall

which has been so important to the Jewish people for centuries.

For some, it is a time to pray;

for others, a time to write a note.

They learn about their history,

  visit the sites,

IDF women soldiers

female soldiers , IDF photos

Kossel, Wailing Wall

Hundreds of young women,

armed with a rifle,

or at rest

are proud to be Israeli soldiers.

Recently three women completed their pilot training

and were qualified as pilots in the Air Force.

It was announced that religious women with children are to be drafted.

From now on, it will be even harder to stereotype the new IDF soldier.