The IDF’s veteran commanders fear that easier
access to Internet and softer treatment of new recruits create lax fighters
By Amos Harel for Tablet Magazine
A relatively small social-media scandal in the IDF last month caused much more interest abroad than it did in Israel itself. Four female soldiers, new recruits assigned to serve in the future as instructors for male infantry, posted pictures of themselves on Facebook wearing nothing but their underwear and combat helmets. A few days later, another group of female soldiers followed their example. This time, a short grainy video, filmed through a cellular phone, showed some of the IDF’s finest dancing half-naked while holding an M-16 assault rifle as if it was a stripper pole, as an off-camera (female) voice encouraged them to “dance like sluts.” The international media, which can’t get enough of hot female Israeli soldiers with guns, got predictably excited. The editors at the London Daily Mail’s website invited readers to “watch half-naked Israeli soldiers,” while their colleagues at The Sun, ever wittier, gave the story a front page spot with the headline “Gaza Strip.”
Israelis were not particularly shocked. The IDF spokesperson’s unit settled for a short condemnation. The soldiers’ behavior, it said, did not reflect the army’s values, and their commanders will discipline them accordingly. (No details or pictures have surfaced documenting this, to the likely disappointment of the British editors.) The female soldiers’ parents explained to reporters that the young women were newcomers and had not realized that new regulations applied once they were in uniform (or in this case, out of it).