krav maga pioneers, then and now

April 22, 2014

Israel loves pioneers. When we refer to the "Generation of the Pioneers" we mean those who came here in the early years, cleared the swamps, built the first towns, planted the trees and made the desert bloom. The generation of the Pioneers is idealized and romanticized and idolized. The pioneers sat around campfires at night, after a long day of work, sang pioneer songs as they were accompanied by the cool guy with the accordion.

We admire them and long for the purity and perceived innocence of the Generation of the Pioneers.

Some long nostalgically for the good old days , oh, I wish I lived in those pioneering days of idealism and purity, those were the days!

But we do not have to go back so far, there are actually pioneers today, in our own times. There are young people who settle areas of our land that one else is willing to settle., they face the dangers, they are referred to as "Noar Ha Gevaoth", the "Youth of the Hills" there idealism matches that our the Generation of the Pioneers. We need not relegate heroism to the past.

But there are those who dislike modern day pioneers, they only revere and idolize those of generations past. They are nostalgic for the good old days. They feel that the pioneering work is done, it is in the past, those glory days are gone. Pioneers can only be found in black and white photos. 

What they do not realize is that pioneering does not require virgin land. A true pioneer can be found at any time, in any place. There is always pioneering work to be done. While others are saying there is nothing more that can be done the modern day pioneer is busy at work making revolutionary innovations. 

Some today admire the pioneers of Krav Maga, history of Krav Maga and the names of the real pioneers.

The point is that Krav Maga pioneering is still taking place, here and now. Looking back, the early days may seem dramatic and exciting, but only in hindsight. Our needs change, circumstances change and those with insight are still making innovative changes. We are still in the pioneering age.

We (IKI) do not follow a curriculum from the 1950's. Leave that for the history books. 

 An early form of Krav Maga, known then as Kapap, practiced in the 1950's. 

We still need pioneers, here and now. Without pioneers things stagnate. Benjamin Franklin was a pioneer in electricity. Alexander Graham Bell was a pioneer with the telephone, but where would be if we stopped there? Where would we be without our modern day pioneers and innovators?

I can tell you. We would be using very primitive light bulbs and telephones. And the teenagers would be lost without their "smarter than we are phones".

In  precisely the same way we need Krav Maga pioneers. What was taught a few years ago is out of date. In Israel we do not allow ourselves to be caught behind. In 1973 we were a different army and a different air force than in 1967. Things change. Everything changes.  

From 1967 to 1973 the entire nature of the Israeli air force was transformed. From one war to the next tanks are upgraded, weapons are reevaluated and upgraded or replaced. New developments are constantly taking place. Why should Krav Maga be the one area of combat where nothing ever changes? Why the obsession with tradition and lineage? 

Why should Krav Maga be the only area not subject to critical evaluation? 

Tradition has no place in such matters, all that matters is saving lives. Using the air force doctrine of the 1960s in 1973 was a huge mistake. Old ways of thinking must give way to a new reality. Change is a given. And so it must be in Krav Maga as well.

In IKI we apply the doctrine of change, and the lessons of the Israel Defense Forces, in our method of training. 

We are never content. 

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