IDF soldiers operate in snow
IDF soldiers operate in snowPhoto: IDF Spokesperson / Flash 90

Due to challenging weather conditions, the Israel Defense Force sent reinforcements to various posts throughout Judea and Samaria,

Armored personnel carriers were placed near towns and outposts in remote locations, put heavy snow removal equipment on standby, and reduced foot patrols as to minimize the chances of soldiers being ambushed.

IDF fear of hostile terrorist activity due to the winter storm. In previous snow storms, Palestinians took stones and wrapped them in the snow and threw them at vehicles and civilians. On some occasions, terrorists have also attempted to hide bombs in mounds of snow at the side of roads.

According to Major Michael Biton, the engineering officer of Binyamin Territorial Brigade, the IDF is referring to this now operation as “Military Preparation for Anything", and preparations began in the early winter. "The goal is to live a normal life even in the communities," said Biton, adding that the preparation is carried out in full cooperation with civilian representatives and towns.

It should be noted that during the storm traffic on the roads are reduced, and while the IDF prepares to increase the protection of the communities themselves, they are reducing the number of soldiers posted in the outfield so as not to be ambushes or exposed to the cold for too long. "When a soldier is station at a post and he is freezing, he will not be able to respond properly, and therefore we are reducing the number of foot patrols," said Maj. Biton.

According to the medical officer of the Binyamin Regional Brigade, Captain Paz Rokach, "There is a danger of soldiers becoming hypothermic and then there will certainly not be effective, this is why we lower the guard posts in advance".

Additionally, in recent days all the outposts in Judea and Samaria have been properly equipped. Soldiers were given supplies, generators, heating bags and kits for the treatment of cold-related injuries.