IDF Officer Ignites Controversy for Drilling Near Naked Soldiers in the Snow

January 9, 2014 12:44 pm 8 comments

IDF soldiers were commanded to roll around in their underwear in the drill. Photo: Screenshot

Two days after the release of a video in which an Israel Defense Forces commander appears to force soldiers under his command to roll in their underwear in the snow, the embattled team commander responded on Thursday, saying that, “It was all done in good fun,” Israel’s Walla news reported.

With their commander barking orders, IDF servicemen from the elite “Maglan” unit, conducted a series of firing drills in the snow wearing only military vests, and their underwear.

The release of the video ignited a firestorm within the IDF and has sparked a national debate around the officer’s decision to drill his subordinates in the bitter cold.

A friend of the commander in question, himself an IDF lieutenant, said on Thursday that the unit commander at the center of the controversy is “a highly respected officer. He is a true professional, highly motivated and deeply respectful of the fighters under his charge.” Having spoken to his friend about the incident, the lieutenant relayed that the unit commander never meant to hurt his soldiers and that it was all done in good fun - as a way to create bonds between soldiers and their commander, Walla reports.

However, despite attempts to defend the conduct of the commander, other sources close to the incident have leveled strong criticism against the actions of the unit leader, Walla said. One of the soldiers who participated in the drill insisted that there were soldiers who refused to participate in the exercise because they feared getting sick.

According to the soldier, “Had soldiers taken ill as a result [of this drill], our operational ability would have degraded,” Walla reported.

Other IDF sources expressed concern that not condemning the unit commander’s conduct could set a dangerous precedent for other officers – and soldiers under their command – to follow, Walla reported.

8 Comments

  • kriskristian1@yahoo.com

    As a retired army officer, I must say that this is quite a new experience.
    I would not have liked to train like these soldiers did, but one must consider that soldiers have to work under all conditions and need to experience what this officer made them do.
    Good for him.
    This is a new way to make the soldiers know what canditions can be like
    It makes them tough

  • Has the Political Correctness that destroyed the United States Armed Forces spread to the IDF? Were Israel attacked during its recent blizzard, would the IDF have gone on leave? If IDF doesn’t toughen-up mighty quickly, Gilad Shalit will go from aberration to epidemic overnight.

  • How often does it snow in Israel?

  • The enemy will not allow them a “time out” to get dressed .

    Remember the picture of US troops in Afghanistan, one squadie was wearing his red shorts.

  • Ask the special forces in the US military, about the grueling conditions they train in?
    That is why they are tough as nails.

  • If “Maglan” the elite unit can not drill in snow and cold who can? I fully support the officer in charge, it was done in good spirit and cements the bond between the unit fighters.
    Elite units train in the harshest of weather and other conditions all over the world, for a darn good reason, to surmount all challenges before them that is why they are called “the elite” fighters. It builds character and stamina. Kol Akavod leMaglan.

  • It`s only good that the boys get some workout Maybe the ladies should of done it later.

  • Master Adrian

    They are soldiers! They are elite soldiers!

    They are soldiers who are supposed to give their lives when it is necessary, for their country, their mates and themselves!

    So, they are trained as they should: hard, tough and rough, and in ways that make them hard and tough!

    A cold is human, but I assume that these soldiers are healthy enough to stand a roll in the snow, in their full pack or in their underwear!

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity How Jewish Television Pioneer Milton Berle Inspired Modern Comedy Stars

    How Jewish Television Pioneer Milton Berle Inspired Modern Comedy Stars

    JNS.org – Today’s comedy superstars, especially those whose careers are driven by television, may very well owe their success to pioneering Jewish entertainer Milton Berle. Born Mendel Berlinger in Manhattan in 1908, Berle became America’s first small-screen star. Aptly nicknamed “Mr. Television,” he influenced and helped promote the work of hundreds of younger comics. “Milton Berle was deceptively successful and very Jewish,” says Lawrence Epstein, author of The Haunted Smile: The Story of Jewish Comedians in America, published the year [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Sports Jewish ‘Hoops Whisperer’ a Secret Weapon for NBA Stars

    Jewish ‘Hoops Whisperer’ a Secret Weapon for NBA Stars

    JNS.org – Idan Ravin’s friends chipped in to buy him a humble but life-changing bar mitzvah gift—a basketball hoop his father attached to the roof of his garage. Little did his friends know that years later, he would be the personal trainer of National Basketball Association (NBA) stars Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, Dwight Howard, and Stephen Curry. Ravin’s new book, “The Hoops Whisperer: On the Court and Inside the Head of Basketball’s Best Players,” details his rise from a Jewish upbringing [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs 10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    Ten major film studios are currently in production on projects that promote a decidedly pro-Israeli narrative. In famously liberal Hollywood, such a development has left mouths agape and set tongues a wagging. Since the Jewish State began defending itself from the thousands of rockets that Hamas has hurled at it – as well as ongoing terror attacks and murders, the overwhelming number of Tinseltown’s producers, directors, actors, and studio moguls have remained indifferent to the plight of millions of Israeli [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Israel Sports So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    Israeli Judoka Yarden Gerbi (63kg), 25, of Netanya, on Thursday lost the final round at the Judo World Cup, and her world title to Clarisse Agbegnenou of France, at a match held in Russia. “I have mixed feelings,” Gerbi told Israeli Army radio. But, “I shouldn’t assume that I’d win the world Judo championship twice in a row,” she admitted. Gerbi won gold in Rio De Janeiro last year. “When I made my decision, I knew it was going to [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    “Jews Out!” was just the name of a child’s game that three little girls played in World War II Europe. But all is not as it seems because the three girls were Jewish, but hiding their true identities. In award-winning author R. D. Rosen’s riveting non-fiction work, Such Good Girls, “Jews Out!” wasn’t a game; it was a struggle for survival. The girls, Sophie, Flora, and Carla, grew up at a time and a place that did not allow them [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    JNS.org – “He was part hippie, part yippie, part beatnik, and part New Age,” wrote Elli Wohlgelernter in a Jerusalem Post eulogy in 1994, following the Oct. 20 passing of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Twenty years later, more robust accounts of Carlebach’s life have come to the surface. Earlier this year, Natan Ophir published the book Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach: Life, Mission & Legacy. This past summer, Rabbi Shlomo Katz’s The Soul of Jerusalem hit the shelves. But even the authors will admit [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    As Hamas loses its grip on power in the Gaza Strip as a result of war, poverty and disillusionment, the Islamist terrorist group has developed an ingenious way to raise the morale of the 1.7 million Palestinian Arabs it was elected to serve. While currently focused on delivering a rocket into every Israeli home, Hamas has not left its own people behind. To gently wipe away the tears of children strategically placed inside kindergartens as human shields, the Hamas Interior Ministry [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    In a strong statement that challenges the historic divide between Christianity and Judaism, Pope Francis recently proclaimed, “Inside every Christian is a Jew.” But if you look at Renaissance artworks that depict Jesus, you will not find any evidence of a Jew inside the Christianized Jesus — even though the Gospels in the New Testament tell us that Jesus was Jewish to the core. Getting that point across to the public is a daunting task, as I learned in interviews I [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.