More female soldiers in more positions in the IDF

IDF's Advisor on Women's Affairs discusses the growing incorporation of females in the IDF

Date: 30/11/2011, 3:28 PM     Author: IDF Website

The Chief of the General Staff's Women's Affairs Advisor, Brig. Gen. Gila Kalifi-Amir, presented data indicating an improvement in the incorporation of females in the IDF and an overall positive trend.

"Women make up 33% of the IDF, taking into consideration their shorter service in comparison to males," Brig. Gen. Kalifi-Amir said. "51% of IDF officers are females serving as both career soldiers and reservists. Women also make up 3% of the IDF's combat soldiers and 15% of technical personnel. Additionally, there is a significant decrease in the number of women serving as secretaries, indicating a change in perception."

Earlier this week, Brig. Gen. Kalifi - Amir honored the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and said that "The IDF values human dignity as one of its guiding ethics in all its operations and activities. The IDF and its soldiers maintain this value out of the understanding that every human is valuable regardless of ethnicity, religion, gender, rank and position."

Today, almost every single position in the IDF is open for female soldiers including combat, field instruction, intelligence and more. Upon enlisting to the IDF girls are offered combat positions in a variety of units including the Artillery Corps, Field Intelligence Corps, Home Front Command Search and Rescue, and several infantry positions. The Karakal infantry battalion was created to enable female IDF soldiers to serve in a combat position alongside males. The IDF commando K9 unit, Oketz, also drafts females as elite combat soldiers.

The position of Women's Affairs Advisor to the Chief of Staff was created in 2001. The female officer holding the position is in charge of ensuring more opportunities and a suitable environment for female soldiers, as well as better enhancing their skills.

The mission of the Advisor on Women's Affairs position is to empower women, the IDF and Israeli society by promoting conditions that allow for the optimal use of the capabilities of women serving in the IDF; promoting equal opportunities for women during their military service; and assimilating women into military leadership positions.

The first female Major General in the IDF, Maj. Gen. Orna Barbivai, the Head of the Manpower Directorate, said at a recent conference that incorporating women in the IDF is essential and happens from the day they enlist. She also said the IDF is led by values of equality and morality.