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Sev
05-02-2012, 02:54 PM
Looks like the Israelis believe things are going to heat up.

<span style='font-size: 20pt'>Six army battalions called up under emergency orders to meet growing threat on Egypt, Syria borders</span>
<span style='font-size: 17pt'>Knesset approves IDF request to call up a further 16 battalions if needed</span>

http://cdn.timesofisrael.com/uploads/2012/05/F100503MT04-635x357.jpg

The IDF has issued emergency call up orders to six reserve battalions in light of new dangers on the Egyptian and Syrian borders. And the Knesset has given the IDF permission to summon a further 16 reserve battalions if necessary, Israeli media reported on Wednesday.

An IDF spokesperson said intelligence assessments called for the deployment of more soldiers.

According to 2008′s Reserve Duty Law, combat soldiers can be called for active reserve duty once every three years, and for short training sessions during the other two. Rising tensions between Israel and Egypt and the ongoing unrest in Syria caused the army to ask the Knesset for special permission to call up more soldiers, more often.

The Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee approved the request recently, enabling the IDF to summon up to 22 battalions for active duty for the second time in three years. Already, the army has called up six of them.

“This signifies that the IDF regards the Egyptian and Syrian borders as the potential source of a greater threat than in the past,” the former deputy chief of staff, Dan Harel, said on Wednesday night.

“The army needs a better ‘answer’ than in the past to the threat,” he said, citing Egypt’s deteriorating control over the Sinai, marked by an upsurge in Bedouin smuggling of weapons and other goods. He also spoke of the growing threat of terrorism from Sinai, as exemplified by an infiltration last August in which eight Israelis were killed.

The Syrian situation was also highly combustible, Harel said, “and it could explode at any moment… and pose a direct challenge to us.”

Maariv said the army had to decide whether to cancel training sessions for enlisted soldiers or to summon additional reserve units, and it chose the latter; canceling training would mean soldiers would not be prepared in the case of an all-out war.

The IDF spokesperson said all the letters summoning soldiers for reserve duty were sent after the IDF received the approval of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee for the larger call-up.

One of the reservists summoned told Maariv he hadn’t expected his call-up letter until next year. Leaving home for more than three weeks is something you have to prepare for, he noted.

Activists from the Reserve Soldiers Forum said they were disappointed time and again by the way the IDF treated its reserve soldiers. The law was supposed to help reservists, but it has been repeatedly bypassed and ignored, they said. “At the end, all that will remain of the law will be its title.”

Soflasnapper
05-02-2012, 04:17 PM
How big are IDF's battalions?

Sev
05-02-2012, 04:31 PM
<span style="color: #000066"> http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/israel/army.htm

The Israeli government does not disclose information on the overall size of the IDF, or the identity, location, and strength of units. In 1988, the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London estimated the strength of the ground forces at 104,000 troops, including 16,000 career soldiers and 88,000 conscripts. An additional 494,000 men and women were regularly trained reserves who could be mobilized within seventy-two hours. According to The Military Balance, in 1997-1998 there were 175,000 soldiers in the regular Israeli army (conscripts and career soldiers) and 430,000 in the reserves. These reserve forces consisted of 365,000 in land forces, 10,000 in the navy and 55,000 in the air force. As of 1999 Jane's estimated the active duty strength at 136,000 troops. In 2004, the International Institute for Strategic Studies estimated the strength of the ground forces at 125,000 troops, including 40,000 career soldiers and 85,000 conscripts, with an additional 600,000 men and women in the reserves.

The Israeli ground forces are highly mechanized. Their equipment inventory included nearly 4,000 tanks and nearly 11,000 other armored vehicles. Their armored personnel vehicles almost equaled in number those of the combined armies of Egypt, Jordan, and Syria. The offensive profile of the army was bolstered significantly by the artillery forces (principally self-propelled and equipped with advanced fire control systems and high-performance munitions). Antitank capabilities had been upgraded with modern rocket launchers and guided missile systems.

As of 1988, most Israeli ground forces were positioned on the northern and eastern border areas facing Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon. After the Syrian army shifted most of its troops out of Lebanon following the IDF withdrawal in June 1985, more than six Syrian divisions were concentrated in the Golan-Damascus area. The IDF responded by constructing several defensive lines of mines and antitank obstacles in the Golan Heights, and by reinforcing its troop strength there, mainly with regular armored and infantry units. Reserve units training in the vicinity also could be mobilized in case of need. Other ground forces were deployed in defending the Lebanese border against infiltration.

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The IDF reserve battalions constitute 70% of the combat echelon -- variously estimated to total as few as 380,000 troops, to as many as 600,000 soldiers. Other estimates suggest a total of 400,000 reserve soldiers. The army reserves constitute the backbone of the army's manpower needs. It is not rare in Israel for two generations to be serving simultaneously in the army - the son obligatory service and the father in reserves. </span>