Merkava 4 tank
Merkava 4 tankFlash 90

The IDF tomorrow will begin yet another pilot program for integrating women in combat roles in the Armored Corps.

This is the third pilot after the previous two that concluded that women encounter physical difficulty in serving as tank operators.

The training will be conducted on a Merkava 4 tank, after which the fighters will begin operational activity on the Egyptian border.

Yamina Knesset Member and reserve Col. Matan Kahane responded: "Does anyone understand why another experiment and yet another experiment is being done? What is so unclear? Women are physiologically different from men.

"Where this difference is irrelevant it is very important to realize the potential of women (such as pilots and sailors). In places where physical ability stands at the core of operational competence, integrating women will harm them and harm the IDF," Kahane added.

In January 2020, IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi decided that the pilot for integrating women in armor indicated potential in border protection missions, but also revealed gaps in meeting the required qualifications.

In light of this, Kochavi stated that to complete all the data required for a correct decision, it will be necessary to continue to advance to the next stage in the process of examining integrating women in tanks in border protection missions.

In accordance with Kochavi's decision, training will be adapted for women in medicine, nutrition, and physical training, and there will be "gendered tanks", ie. tank staff will be comprised of women only. At the operational stage, the organizational affiliation will be to Border Protection System Division 80.

At the end of the training and operational activity period, a situation assessment will be carried out and decisions made to continue recruiting women into armor.

The Torat Lechima organization responded: "It is very unfortunate that Chief of Staff Kochavi surrendered to radical women's lobbies. How can a professional pilot program be conducted in the current reality? Is now the time to examine whether combat armor is suitable for women without lowering the bar?"

This is a public coup, a controversial public issue, which is being hastily decided while taking advantage of a global health crisis. What is so urgent for Chief of Staff Kochavi to make the decision now, while there are discussions about stopping other draft cycles because of the COVID-19 crisis?

"The IDF should be involved in helping the country deal with the coronavirus and not in conducting social experiments."