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Feminism and the Army Don’t Mix, Even in Israel

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The Israel Women’s Network welcomed the decision of Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi to extend the pilot project for integrating women in combat roles in the Armored Corps. “What happens in the Israel Defense Forces,” explained executive director Michal Gera Margaliot last week, “affects civil society… As long as that’s the case, we must ensure that the welfare of the female soldiers and their human dignity are maintained.”

The declaration by the Women’s Network is problematic for a number of important reasons, and this is an opportunity to explain the significance of the chief of staff’s decision. Let’s begin with the fact that there is no reason to welcome the decision as a feminist achievement. The chief of staff decided to avoid making a decision – which in the opinion of his predecessor was necessary at this point – to declare the pilot a success and allow the integration of women as tank operators.

We will remind you that there was no pilot prior to the integration of women as pilots and navigators. It was a matter of principle, which now is no longer controversial. There........

© Haaretz