Israeli female soldiers manning a check point.
Yesterday we heard the news; another attack from the Egyptian border, again the Egyptians were unable to stop terrorists from launching attacks against Israel via the Egyptian border. And again an Israeli family is burying a son, a son who was so proud to serve his country.
The young man who was killed managed to shoot "a significant number of round towards the enemy and is credited with killing of the three terrorists". "Netanel jumped, made contact with the enemy, fought and was killed." (Israel Today)
And yet there was some good news; all three terrorists were shot dead by Israeli soldiers, and one of the terrorists was shot and killed by a female Israeli soldier. The report said that she "stormed and eliminated the terrorist".
The female is a an 18 year old soldier, raised in a religious home. (Source: Israel Today, Yisrael Hayom)
Nearly all Israeli women serve their country; some in the military and others in National Service. Some young women choose combat units and must enlist for at least three years. Naturally they are not sent out to war and for the most part they serve as a backup unit in the less dangerous areas. But the other day the mixed male/female Karakal unit happened to be in the line of fire. Tragically one Israeli soldier was killed but all three terrorists were shot dead, thus preventing a major terrorist attack on civilians.
This once again raises the question of female combative ability.
I have long maintained that women are quite capable of defending themselves, given proper training. I had the honor of being interviewed by the BBC in London and particiapating in a forum discussion on this topic. I would not put a woman in a boxing ring against a man but I do maintain that a woman is quite capable of learning Krav Maga and being street deadly.
Imagine a society where everyone was trained as a warrior. Imagine a society where Krav Maga training was universal, where every man and woman was trained in Krav Maga from a young age, not in some quick superficial course but real training over a long period of time.
Imagine a rapist or terrorist entering a home knowing that the local housewife was an expert at Krav Maga, perhaps a combat veteran and perhaps owned a gun. I think this intruder would be quite nervous and perhaps rethink his plan.
I have heard stories about thieves entering Israeli homes only to be beaten badly by the lady of the house or one of the daughters. This indeed is a great deterrent against further attacks or home invasions.
And yet we find that most people do not truly value Krav Maga or Self Defense training, there is never enough time, or it simply does not make the cut on the list of priorities.
What can be more important than personal safety? What price can we put on our lives and the lives of our loved ones? We spend so much money on medical insurance but none or little on personal safety insurance.
The women of the Karakal unit train very hard, they go beyond their natural abilities, they devote three long years of their lives to be able to be part of this unit. They must carry heavy weapons and endure long hikes. "Their ambition is crazy", says commander Ortal Cohen of the Karakal unit. These girls simply want to serve their country and contribute in a meaningful way.
Both on a national level and on a personal level there is no doubt that women can and should contribute to their own feeling of safety and confidence.
Today the women of Israel stand a bit taller.
Women are also trained in Krav Maga in the IDF and a few go on to become outstanding instructors in Civilian life.
My friend Mirav during her military service in the IDF
and these days in as a respected Krav Maga instructor in Italy
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