The Deputy Commander of the Gaza division in the IDF and director of staff at the Interdisciplinary Officer's Training school, Col. Jonathan Baransky, spoke to Army Radio about the dispute concerning women's participation in combat units.
He maintained that the whole dispute does not stem from a genuine desire to strengthen the army but rather from feminist interpretations of gender equality which are not acceptable in most other areas of society.
In sports, for example, it is considered logical and acceptable to separate the genders because of the superior strength of male groups. Baransky feels that if the IDF wants to be victorious it cannot mix men and women together in military activities. And the IDF is in a war against real enemies, not taking part in a sports match.
Baransky said that the existing mixed-gender units are far from being a success. The IDF was forced to lower the physical and professional parameters in order to enable women to pass the training courses as they have different bone mass and muscle strength and this affected the professional level of the unit.
Baransky added that his opposition to mixed units does not stem only from religious beliefs but because from an objective perspective it is not healthy to mix the genders. He said that in internal IDF investigations of the mixed units efficacy, it became apparent that they performed at lower standards than all men units. Even worse, wherever they were stationed "contraceptives ran out in the space of half a day" at the base canteen, hardly a situation the IDF can allow in its combat units on base.