IDF

UK teens volunteer for the IDF

January 8, 2009

British teenagers are working on army bases across Israel after being asked to help by the IDF.

The army approached the FZY youth movement, along with its American sister group Young Judea, to ask if participants on its year programme could volunteer. Teens from the religious Zionist movement, B’nei Akiva, also volunteered. Some IDF bases had been understaffed as soldiers were deployed to Gaza. The teenagers began working on eight bases across Israel on Sunday, packing kits for soldiers in Gaza, checking equipment for faults and monitoring stocks.

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Fresh Gaza violence likely as truce ends

By Yaakov Katz, December 18, 2008

The Israel Defence Forces went on high alert this week as Hamas threatened not to renew their ceasefire with Israel in the Gaza Strip.

The six-month truce between Israel and Hamas was due to expire today (Friday). While Israel prefers to extend it, Hamas appears to be split between continuing the pact and ending it. Damascus-based Hamas political leader Khaled Mashal said on Sunday that the ceasefire would not be renewed, while Hamas officials in Gaza said only that the issue was under review.

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Fears of fresh Gaza violence as ceasefire nears end

By Yaakov Katz, December 16, 2008

The Israel Defense Forces have gone on high alert as Hamas threatened to not renew their ceasefire with Israel in the Gaza Strip.

The six-month truce between Israel and Hamas is due to expire on Friday. While Israel prefers to extend it, Hamas appears to be split between continuing the truce and ending it. Damascus-based Hamas political leader Khaled Mashaal said on Sunday that the ceasefire would not be renewed, while Hamas officials in Gaza said only that the issue was under review.

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A simmering dispute set to bring the house down

By Yaakov Katz, November 27, 2008

Soldiers pose on the rooftop for pictures, young women with scarves covering their heads stuff laundry into washing machines lining the hallway, and teenage boys with large kippot and sidelocks sit in a room nearby listening attentively to a rabbi's sermon.

All this is happening in a settler-squatted four-story building in Hebron on a road that links the settlement of Kiryat Arba and the Cave of the Patriarchs.

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Shin Bet fears settlers may turn to arms

By Ben Lynfield, November 6, 2008

Amid growing tensions with radical settlers, the head of the Shin Bet security service has warned that extremists can be expected to engage in armed attacks against the IDF in the event of peace moves with the Palestinians.

Yuval Diskin did not explicitly say that he expected attempts at political assassination in the event of a push for removal of settlements and outposts in the West Bank.

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PA to curb Hamas with 700 police in Hebron

By Yaakov Katz, October 23, 2008

IDF officers met their Palestinian counterparts this week to co-ordinate the arrival of 700 Palestinian policemen in Hebron in an effort to crack down on Hamas before Mahmoud Abbas's presidential term ends in January.

The 700 recently completed US-backed military training in Jordan and were due to be sent to the Palestinian section of Hebron, one of the largest and most volatile cities in the West Bank.

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IDF launches inquiry into draft-dodge organisation

By Yaakov Katz, September 16, 2008

In an effort to combat the growing phenomenon of draft dodging among Israeli youth, the Israeli attorney general has, in a rare move, decided to launch an investigation against a left-wing group that offers teenagers assistance in receiving exemptions from serving in the Israeli Defense Forces.

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Activists concerned as Israel resumes expulsion of refugees

By Ben Lynfield, August 28, 2008

Israel has revived the practice of rapidly returning refugees crossing into its territory from Egypt for the first time since a group of 48 Africans went missing after being forcibly returned to Sinai last year by the IDF.

The IDF confirmed on Wednesday that fresh expulsions had been carried out but could not immediately say how many people were returned or what their nationalities were. The expulsions became public only after soldiers serving along the Egyptian border alerted refugee-rights activists of new orders to return refugees to Egypt.

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Activists’ lenses shoot back at IDF ‘abuses’

By Ben Lynfield, July 25, 2008

The Israeli human-rights group B'tselem says it is gathering more images of soldiers and settlers targeting Palestinians after it shocked the Israeli public this week by releasing a video clip of a soldier apparently firing a rubber-coated metal bullet at a handcuffed and blindfolded Palestinian.

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London memorial for IDF soldiers

By Jay Grenby, July 25, 2008

A Bnei Akiva-organised service in memory of Israeli soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser at Hampstead Garden Synagogue on Sunday was attended by over 500 people.

Board of Deputies president Henry Grunwald was among communal leaders and Israeli representatives at the service, arranged at short notice by BA's Eli Bauernfreund and Joshua Pomerance following the return of the soldiers' bodies to Israel from Lebanon as part of a prisoner-exchange deal.

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