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Survey: Tiny fraction of Jewish Israelis want their kids to serve in elite combat units

Soldiers from the Israeli Air Force's elite Unit 669 take part in an exercise in an undated photograph. (Israel Defense Forces)
Soldiers from the Israeli Air Force's elite Unit 669 take part in an exercise in an undated photograph. (Israel Defense Forces)

A survey finds that a very small percentage of Jewish Israelis want their children to serve in elite combat units in the IDF.

The Israel Democracy Institute survey finds that only 3% of women and 9% of men would like to see their children in such units. The numbers are even lower for regular combat units, like the infantry or armored corps, with 2% of women and 5% of men supporting such a move.

However, there is widespread support for having their children serve in elite technological units like the IDF’s vaunted Unit 8200, with 45% for men, 44% for women in favor.

The survey found that  22% of women and 11% of men would prefer that their children did not serve at all.

However, there was wide support for opening up all combat roles for women, with 54% of Jewish Israelis thinking that elite combat units should be open to women, while 35% disagree.

The survey was carried out on September 15–19, 2022, with 805 men and women interviewed in Hebrew, constituting a nationally representative sample of the adult population in Israel aged 18 and over. The maximum sampling error was ±3.52%.

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