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May 9, 2022 1:08 pm

Amid Terror Wave, IDF Kicks Off Large-Scale Drill to Simulate Multifront War

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avatar by Sharon Wrobel

Israeli military forces conduct counter-terror operations in the West Bank on May 9, 2022. Photo: IDF

The Israel Defense Forces on Monday embarked on a monthlong, large-scale military exercise to train against a multifront war against Israel’s enemies, as security forces continued to confront a string of violent terror attacks.

The training, dubbed “Chariots of Fire,” will simulate multi-front and multi-arm combat scenarios in the air, at sea, on land and on the cyber front. The maneuver aims to both increase the IDF’s defensive readiness and examine its preparedness for an intensive, prolonged campaign against enemy forces, the army said. Military vehicles, armored vehicles, aircraft and warships will be activated as part of the drill.

The exercise comes as Israeli security forces have in recent days stepped up operations amid a wave of deadly terror attacks, with the number of Israelis killed by Palestinian and Arab Israeli attackers since mid-March now at 19.

The IDF emphasized that its “top priority is to protect Israeli civilians and strengthen the sense of security within the State of Israel.”

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The exercise will bring together thousands of both regular and reserve IDF personnel from all commands, branches and directorates. IDF combat units and headquarters will also participate. As part of the drill, a multi-branched logistical response and fire support capabilities will be tested, as well as joint cooperation capabilities between various security organizations and government ministries.

“IDF soldiers will continue to carry out counterterrorism activities and strengthen defensive efforts at the Judea and Samaria security barrier during the exercise,” the military insisted.

Early Monday morning, Israeli security forces arrested 15 individuals suspected of assisting the Palestinian terrorists who carried out the deadly attacks in the cities of Ariel and Elad.

In a joint effort, the IDF, Israel Border Police and ISA forces operated in a number of towns in the West Bank. In Rumana — close to Jenin, and the hometown of the two terrorists who carried out the fatal stabbing in the city of Elad on Thursday — security forces caught two individuals suspected of helping the perpetrators.

“Israel has a top mission: to strike at terrorism, to persecute anyone who wants to harm Israelis, reach murderers everywhere, even at home,” Foreign Minister Yair Lapid stated. “We also need to catch the person who sent them. For this purpose, the security system receives all the tools, all the backup.”

Security forces on Monday morning also operated in the town of Qarawat Bani Hassan, apprehending two Palestinians suspected of assisting the terrorists who carried out the attack last week in Ariel, in which an Israeli security guard was killed.

Troops further operated in the Balata Refugee Camp, and the villages of Aida, Bayt Rima, Bil’in, Azzun, Qatanna and Himza, arresting individuals suspected of involvement in terrorist activities. The army confiscated two knives and two handguns during counterterrorism operations in the village of Azzun.

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