The Israel Defense Forces have been releasing some important videos on YouTube – which do a wonderful job of showing the true face of the heroic young soldiers of the IDF. Recently a video was released (you can view it below) portraying the IDF’s only co-ed combat unit, presented by a well spoken young woman who details their final exercise, taking place after months of hard training. The clip does exactly what digital media is supposed to do – tell a story without a filter. It shows the true human face of Israel’s soldiers, many of which are just regular teenagers that people around the world can relate to.
This is an example of good public relations work.
In much of the media, there is an anti-military prejudice – and the IDF isn’t loved around the world. By addressing incorrect perceptions, the Israeli Military is starting to combat the false narrative that has been told about it.
Israel’s army is a necessary means of defense for Israel and is the main tool for securing the safety of Israeli citizens. Promoting its vital work with effective, well edited segments like these can go a long way in showing many how close to home their work is. The IDF is the people’s military. It’s 19 year old Shiri who misses her family, 22 year old Haim who talks of how he has grown up while serving, and the dedicated Druze soldiers who speak of the battalion members as their own family. Putting these individuals up-front is important – let them talk to the media and show the unfiltered faces of Israel’s ‘local heroes.’
These young soldiers who make up the rank and file are not focused on policy; instead their message is about their personal experiences; why they enlisted and what they do for the State of Israel. They talk about the problems they solve every day on the ground, in the trenches (literally and figuratively). When real military men and women become familiar on a personal level, even the most hardened reporter can recognize the impossibility of some of the baseless accusations that have been leveled against these individuals.
This campaign shows that the military is solving problems that go beyond war and conflict (they help poor people all over the world, rebuild infrastructure domestically and in foreign lands, etc.) It helps promote Israel’s idea of the military as an organization of real people, citizens and neighbors.
This can also help show people the real State of Israel in a major way, it’s a win-win. Segments can be viewed here and below, many will undoubtedly get goose bumps watching.