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April 23, 2014 / 23 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Benny Gantz’

How the IDF Defends Against Hezbollah

Friday, April 18th, 2014

Hezbollah, a terrorist organization based in Southern Lebanon, threatens Israel’s security every day.The terrorist organization has 100,000 rockets capable of hitting anywhere in Israel and is funded and supported by Iran.  Last week, in a series of interviews on Israeli television, the IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen Benny Gantz stressed that preparations for a military operation in Lebanon is a possible, realistic and necessary scenario. We spoke to a senior colonel responsible for training on the northern border in order to discover how the IDF intends to counter this threat. 

The situation in Southern Lebanon

IDF forces know that a future confrontation with Hezbollah is inevitable and will be highly complex. IDF soldiers must learn and apply unique methods of combat. The IDF colonel responsible for training fighters on the northern border has the difficult responsibility to create the most realistic terrain simulations in order to train these soldiers.
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Hezbollah, rooted in southern Lebanon, uses this region as it sees fit. Taking orders from Iran, the terrorist organization has for years been using Lebanese civilian infrastructure in order to prepare for its next confrontation with Israel. “The villages based in Southern Lebanon have become a training camp. Wherever you are, in every house, a member of Hezbollah is watching. The Lebanese cannot live a normal life under the control of Hezbollah,” the commander of the northern forces said.

This callous use of the Lebanese population by Hezbollah is not new. During the Second Lebanon War, the terrorist organization used the homes of Lebanese civilians as weapon caches and firing positions. “After several years of uneasy calm in the region, we know that Hezbollah is more thoroughly embedded in the civilian population of Southern Lebanon,” said the northern commander.

The telephone network of the Lebanese state, for example, has repeatedly been infiltrated by the terrorist organization to secure its own communications. But Hezbollah goes even further in its exploitation of Lebanese territory. Hamas in the Gaza Strip has been in the news digging tunnels into Israel. “Hezbollah has more funds and more capability than Hamas, and they are doing exactly the same thing,” the northern commander said. Hezbollah tunnels are a real danger to IDF soldiers stationed at the border. Hezbollah terrorists can use them to abduct soldiers or to prepare ambushes during ground operations in a future conflict.

Hezbollah in Syria

Hezbollah takes the possibility of a ground operation very seriously. The terror organization has been engaged in the Syrian civil war, and uses this conflict as training for the future.

“Hezbollah invests a lot of energy in Syria. It is on the offensive and even though it has lost many men, this conflict gives the Hezbollah fighters comprehensive training for the next conflict with Israel,” said the northern commander.

IDF stands ready

Faced with this continuing and increasingly complex threat, the IDF has established training strategies and fighting techniques that will ensure the security of Israel over the long term.

Beyond physical training, IDF soldiers are placed under conditions of urban warfare to better understand the reality of the enemy territory. “Soldiers train in military bases modeled after villages in Lebanese territory,” said the colonel.

Israeli soldiers training for urban warfare

“Indeed, in any upcoming battles with Hezbollah, there will be no other choice but to conduct a large ground operation. We must find every place where Hezbollah is hiding. Today, Hezbollah is dug in amid a civilian population and we must prepare for this,” said the colonel.

The lessons of the Second Lebanon War continue today. In that confrontation with the Lebanese Shiite militia in 2006, the emphasis was put on cooperation between the different branches of the military in order to achieve maximum effectiveness against terrorists embedded within the civilian population.

“The forces on the ground, fighters in tanks, helicopters and fighter planes are more ready than ever and trained to work with the IDF Intelligence Corps in emergency situations,” the northern comander said.

Throughout the interview, the northern commander insisted on the professionalism expected from soldiers on the ground. This professionalism ​​results from hours of training, preparing the soldiers for all the circumstances they could face with the enemy, including: civilians in the combat zone, ambushes and attempted abduction. It is this value of maximum preparation that will ultimately ensure Israel’s safety.

Mind-Blowing IDF Helicopter Action

Sunday, April 13th, 2014

The following are six incredible shots of IDF helicopters used in a variety of missions. These warplanes are ready to act on a moment’s notice to defend the State of Israel.

1. A Sikorsky CH 53 helicopter in the smoky sky.

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Flying with obscured vision is just one of the many skills that a recruit must master before becoming an IAF pilot.

2. Apache helicopters fly over the skies of Greece.

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The Hellenic Air Force and the IAF trained together in Greece in 2010. The two air forces practiced rescue missions, training with the Hellenic Air Force both in the role of ally and enemy. The exercise also gave the IAF the chance to practice rescue missinos while dealing with mountainous terrain and rapidly-changing weather.These types of exercises central to military cooperation between Israel and Greece.

3. IAF combat helicopters take flight in Israel’s open skies.

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These five helicopters display the principles of cooperation and coordination. The pilots must work closely together to fly in unison and to complete their missions.

4. Rotors give off a ring of light.

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A helicopter is waiting for takeoff during an aerial evacuation drill for the IDF’s Desert Reconnaissance Battalion, which is entirely comprised of Bedouin soldiers who volunteer for service in the IDF.

5. Helicopter takes off from Mt Hermon.

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The helicopter took off after a visit from Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz to the snowy region. Mt. Hermon borders Syria and plays a strategic role in guarding Israel’s northern border.

6.  Golani Brigade commandos drill in the north of Israel.

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The soldiers practiced storming an area, and operating under bio-chemical attack. The drill also included cooperation with the Israel Air Force, as the soldiers had to protect a helicopter that was to land in an open field.

Samson Super Hercules Makes Aliyah, Joins IAF

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

In a ceremony held Wednesday, April 9, at the “Nevatim” Air Force base, the new ‘Samson’ C-130J Super Hercules military aircraft landed in Israel.

The ceremony was held in the presence of the Minister of Defense, Mr. Moshe (Bogie) Ya’alon, the Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Benjamin (Benny) Gantz, and senior members of Lockheed Martin, manufacturer of the aircraft.

Samson

From the Left: Maj Gen Amir Eshel, Commander of the Israel Air Force; Minister of Defense, Mr. Moshe (Bogie) Ya’alon; the Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Benjamin (Benny) Gantz.

The C-130J Super Hercules enhances the IAF’s long-range capabilities which include airborne supply, transportation of troops and cargo, aerial refueling for helicopters and planes, electronic warfare, maritime patrol and special operations.

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Over the past year, squadron members have trained in Italy and in the United States in order to thoroughly familiarize themselves with the aircraft and its capabilities.

This is the first ‘Samson’ C-130J Super Hercules aircraft to join the newly established ‘Samson’ squadron. More are scheduled to arrive in July 2014 and over the course of 2015.

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The Chief of the General Staff, Lieutenant General Benjamin (Benny) Gantz, spoke at the ceremony: “Today we mark a new peak in the IDF’s capabilities. Over its 50 years of service, Hercules planes took part in military aid missions, civilian, and humanitarian operations. The “Samson” aircraft joining the IAF today is an innovative and revolutionary addition to our forces. This type of aircraft gives the IDF extended operational flexibility and strengthens our long range capabilities, making us more accurate and powerful than ever. The progressive systems the “Samson” aircraft is equipped with will allow us to execute more complex operations than in the past- we will be able to operate faster, in all weather conditions, in greater distance, in lower altitude and in maximum discretion.”

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IDF Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen Benny Gantz, speaking at inauguration ceremony of the “Samson.”

The Chief of Staff continued:  ”Let me take this opportunity to say thank you, and pay my appreciation to the great men and women who have worked hard to bring this moment to bear. Those who were behind this amazing air-plane – in Lockheed Martin, in the US government, the DOD, the US Air Force as well as the IMOD, the Israeli Air Force and many others.”

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 Major General Amir Eshel, Commander of the Israel Air Force, also spoke at the inauguration ceremony: “This plane reinforces the IDF’s abilities to operate far beyond the shores of Israel. The combination of this Lockheed Martin manufactured aircraft with the special Israeli technological systems which were installed on it make the ‘Samson’ C-130J Super Hercules Aircraft the best plane of its kind.

The variety of tasks the aircraft is destined for is beyond all imagination. This aircraft is a testimony of the unique strategic relationship between the State of Israel and the US, to the strong ties between the IAF and the USAF, as well as to the continuing cooperation with Lockheed Martin, manufacturer of the ‘Samson’ C-130J Super Hercules Aircraft, the F-16 Fighting Falcon and the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II.”

US Gen. Dempsey Lands in Israel, to Meet with Netanyahu

Monday, August 12th, 2013

Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey landed in Israel Monday afternoon to begin talks with Israel and later with Jordan, where American troops are stationed.

Syria will top his agenda in Jordan, which has been flooded by Syrian refugees and where there has been a spillover in fighting in the Syrian civil war.

In Israel, Gen. Dempsey will meet with IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, with the Iranian nuclear program and instability in Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula high on the agenda.

Dempsey arrived immediately after U.S. Air Force Gen. Mark A. Welsh was in Israel for a secret four-day visit, which the United States had asked not be reported until it concluded.

IDF Holds Surprise Exercise Testing Preparedness

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

On Wednesday morning, following an order of Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, the IDF conducted a surprise exercise to test the preparedness and capabilities of a number of units, with a special focus on the artillery and air force. Forces from all regional commands participated in the exercise, alongside soldiers from the IAF.

The exercise began with the mobilization of various units, several of which drilled their mobilization protocols. The exercise will continue with forces massing from the center of Israel and moving north to the Golan Heights, and will conclude with a live fire exercise in the afternoon. The exercise will examine a number of issues in the areas of preparedness and competence.

The exercise was planned in advance and is not connected to nor the result of any change in the alert level. The exercise is in fact part of a routine set of reviews and surprise exercises conducted throughout the year by the IDF Comptroller.

The exercise is under the command of Chief Artillery Officer Brg. Gen. Roy Riftin, and is expected to conclude later this evening.

IDF Chief of Staff: Covert Ops, War Readiness Up

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

Israeli Chief of Staff Major General Benny Gantz has ordered Israel Defense Force soldiers to ramp up their covert operations in enemy countries, according to an interview published in Israel’s Yediot Ahronot newspaper.

“You almost won’t find a point in time where something isn’t happening somewhere in the world,” the Associated Press quoted him as saying. “I am escalating all those special operations.”

Gantz also stressed the critical nature of dealing with the Iranian nuclear program in 2012. “In principle, we are ready to act,” Gantz told Yediot Ahronot, ahead of Israel’s 64th Independence Day. “We are preparing our plan accordingly.”

Gantz called the possibility of Israel entering into war “higher than in the past” due to regional instability,” but also said there are no indications that any war is imminent.  And while Gantz believes a future war would involve missiles falling in Israel, “I don’t advise anyone to test us on this front,” he said.

“When (Hezbollah leader Hassan) Nasrallah comes out of his bunker, he’s concerned – and rightfully so,” Gantz said.  He saw what happened to Lebanon last time, and it won’t be close to what will happen to Lebanon next time.”

IDF Chief of Staff Visits Canadian Counterpart, Relations ‘Growing’

Sunday, March 18th, 2012

The IDF Chief of General Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz concluded his official visit to Canada on Friday. Gantz was greeted by his Canadian counterpart, General Walt Natynczyk, who emphasized the importance of strengthening security cooperation between the two countries. The CDS hosted Lt. Gen. Gantz for an official dinner, in which his deputy and other senior officers participated.

“Our relationship with the Israeli Defense Forces is growing. We will continue to build upon our friendship with practical initiatives of mutual benefit,” said General Natynczyk.

The two met for an extended “one-on-one” meeting, during which they exchanged views on current security issues.

Following the meeting, the CDS conducted a roundtable panel with representatives from the Ministry of National Defense and senior officers from the Canadian military, during which Lt. Gen. Gantz gave a detailed brief regarding the current challenges in the Middle East, the radical elements which carry negative influence in the area, and the existing trends in light of the changes that several countries in the Middle East have faced over the past year.

The panel ended with a discussion on the current fields of cooperation between the Canadian military and defense establishment and the Israeli Defense Ministry and the IDF.

Since the March 2008 signing of the “Declaration of Intent” between the Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness of Canada and the Ministry of Public Security of the Government of Israel, there has been an accelerated rapprochement between the Canadian and Israeli security establishments.

The 2008 agreement allows Canada and Israel to enhance cooperation in the areas of organized crime, emergency management, crime prevention, and other related public safety concerns.

IDF Chief of Staff: ‘We Are Yet to Use Even One-Thousandth of our Power’

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, speaking Tuesday morning to new recruits of the K’fir Division, referred to Israeli military action during the escalation of hostilities in the south, emphasized that “in the current round of fighting we are yet to have used even one thousandth of our power.”

(Some of the residents of Israel’s southern towns might be asking why the IDF could not have increased its use of power by two or three thousandths, to shorten their three days of suffering.)

The Chief of Staff suggested the next stage depends completely on the activities of the terror groups. “We are following events in Gaza, and if the terror organizations will really stop shooting, the IDF will respond accordingly,” he clarified. “Quiet will be answered with quiet, but if it gets noisy in the southern settlements, it will be noisy in Gaza as well.”

Gantz spoke at some length about the killing of the Secretary General of the Popular Resistance Committees by the AIF last Friday. It was that killing which had started the current round of fighting. “We  acted to stop an event which could have had strategic ramifications. Warnings regarding that events are still pending,” he said.

“Over the past three days 26 people were killed on the other side. To my regret, four of them were not terrorists but happened to be near the fighting,” Gantz said. “We try everything in our power to hurt only those who should be hurt,” the Chief of Staff insisted. “The dead bystanders were killed as a result of the fact that our enemies are operating from within the civilian population.”

Speaking to the future warriors, Gantz emphasized: “You are not killers. You should be proud about becoming warriors, and don’t forget for even a moment that you are people who hold on to high values, trustworthiness and the purity of your weapons.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/eye-on-palestine/idf-chief-of-staff-we-are-yet-to-use-even-one-thousandth-of-our-power/2012/03/13/

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