First time in Judea and Samaria: Offensive drone in action

Flying long distances quickly and releasing riot dispersal material accurately - Binyamin Brigade presents the new offensive drone.

Michal Oria, IDF Website ,

לראשונה ביו"ש: הרחפן ההתקפי בפעולה
לראשונה ביו"ש: הרחפן ההתקפי בפעולה
צילום: דובר צה"ל

Every soldier who carries out operational activity in the Judea and Samaria region encounters violent disturbances, during which Arabs riot, burn tires, and throw stones and Molotov cocktails at soldiers and onto roads with passing vehicles.

In order to disperse these disturbances, IDF forces are required to arrive at the scene and use anti-riot equipment. Inherent in this activity are quite a few challenges and dangers for the fighters, who are required to approach the rioters and enter the range of "fire" while being prepared to absorb the stones thrown in their direction.

In the past year, the commanders of the Binyamin Brigade have worked with representatives of the Military Research and Development Administration (Mafat) for the purpose of preventing the dangerous friction and developing an appropriate operational response. The cooperation between the parties resulted in the development of the "offensive drone."

This drone can fly about a half of a mile in a very short time, sending a large quantity of riot dispersal material, especially tear gas, very accurately, all at a height of around 300 feet. "No stone will reach this height," explains Major A., the liaison officer at the Binyamin Brigade who was one of the project's leaders.

"We realized that this tool has abilities that we have to insist on," emphasizes Major A. "We immediately began a wide range of training and experimentation with the higher levels of command, in order to get all the necessary approvals and to make the drone operational as quickly as possible."

In the course of the experiments, the offensive drone displayed a particularly high operational capability, but its first baptism of fire was not carried out in Judea and Samaria, where it was tested, but in the Gaza Strip as part of the measures against the violent disturbances that developed near the security fence.

"The success of the drone in the Gaza Strip has sharpened its importance in our region as well, so in recent weeks the tool has also played a significant role in the campaign against disturbances in our region," says Major A. "At the moment we are just launching the drone and it is doing the work, and preventing direct friction with rioters. "

But the greatest strength of the weapon lies not in its operational capabilities, but in the deterrent power it produces vis-à-vis the rioters. "The moment they recognize that a drone is approaching them, they are already leaving," says Major A.

In addition, new ideas are constantly being developed on how to further develop the tool in order to respond to other challenges in the sector: "We are thinking of taking advantage of the fact that the drone can carry almost anything, with the aim of using it to disperse flyers in areas where there is heavy incitement to terrorism."

"The results that drone has brought so far in the area show that it will be a significant boost of force for us against terrorism in the region in the long term as well," concludes Major A.