Saturday, May 25, 2013

Israeli Defense Forces (IDF)

To learn more, visit the IDF website: 

Formed out of the ashes of the Holocaust when more than six million Jews were murdered, the State of Israel dedicated itself to the ideal of Jewish defense and security for the future. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF), or Tzahal in Hebrew, is the actualization of this ideal.
The IDF is comprised of the Army, Air Force, and Navy and today ranks among the world's most battle-tested and well-trained armed forces. Since its founding in 1948, the IDF has fought in ten wars or extended conflicts and has taken part in some of the most daring missions in the history of modern warfare.
The IDF mission statement is, "To defend the existence, territorial integrity and sovereignty of the State of Israel."

History & Founding
Before the official establishment of Israel in 1948, there were a number of Jewish armed organizations that operated in defense of the land.
The main organizations were the Haganah and its commando-strike forces called the Palmach, which answered to the elected leadership of the Yishuv. Other armed defense groups, namely the Lehi ("Fighters for the Freedom of Israel", also known as the Stern Gang) and the IZL (Etzel or "National Military Organization") operated independently. These organizations were often at ends with the political leadership of the Yishuv and their actions, sometimes described as terrorism, were regularly condemned by David Ben-Gurion and other leaders.

It was only natural that when Israel's independence was declared the new government would establish a single, unified armed force. Thus, on May 28, 1948, the Provisional Government of Israel issued Defense Army of Israel Ordinance No. 4 signed by Prime Minister Ben-Gurion, established the Israel Defense Forces.
IDF dropped warning leaflets over Gaza

The IDF was comprised of the Haganah (in particular, its operational branch, the Palmach) and former elements of the Jewish Brigade that foug
ht under the British flag during World War II.
After the establishment of the IDF, the two Jewish underground organizations, the Etzel and Lehi, joined the defense forces in a loose confederation, but were allowed to operate independently in some sectors until the end of the War of Independence, after which the organizations were disbanded and their members integrated on an individual basis into the IDF.

Technological Prowess
The IDF is one of the most high-tech armies in the world, possessing top-of-the-line weapons and computer systems. The development of a sophisticated defense industry has also led to a great deal of exports, which today account for a majority of Israel's revenues and allows the country's defense industry to compete against some of the largest companies in the world.
The Israeli security industry maintains a very high reputation for its guns, armored fighting vehicles (tanks, tank-converted APCs, armoured bulldozers etc) and rocketry (missiles and rockets). The Air Force is considered one of the world's best. Israel also designs and in some cases manufactures, aircraft (Kfir, Lavi) and naval systems (patrol and missile ships). Much of the IDF's electronic systems (intelligence, communication, command and control, navigation etc.) are also Israeli-developed.
As many believe
The Israeli government-owned defense industries include world-renowned companies such as Israel Military Industries (IMI), Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), and the Rafael Arms Development Authority. Rafael has become a world leader in such varied categories as passive armor, naval decoys, observation balloon systems, acoustic torpedo countermeasures, ceramic armor, air-breathing propulsion, and air-to-air, air-to-surface and surface-to-surface missiles.
Israel can launch reconnaissance satellites into orbit, a capability shared only by Russia, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, India, and Japan. Both the satellites (Ofeq) and the launchers (Shavit) were developed by the Israeli security industries.
Israel is also thought to have a nuclear capability, although the Israeli government has never confirmed this. The Federation of American Scientists estimates that Israel probably has 100-200 nuclear warheads, which can be delivered by airplanes or ballistic missiles. The Jericho II missile is reported to have a range between 1,500 and 4,000 km, and therefore can target sites as far away as central Russia, Iran and Libya.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.