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The IDF’s New (and Growing) Problem

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We’ve all heard of the maxim: “More is Less.” Israel’s army is now facing precisely that phenomenon, and its headache will only increase in the coming years. What does it have “too much” of? 18-year-old draftees!

As is well known, Israel is the only OECD country with a positive birthrate i.e., far above the 2.1 needed for simple population replacement every generation. With around three children per woman, the number of potential draftees has increased significantly – and is about to explode. In 2021 there were approximately 90,000 Israeli young men and women of draft age. By 2030 – less than a decade from now – the projections are for over 130,000 (demographic extrapolation is an accurate exercise as those early adults today are already alive as pre-teenagers).

Such an increase might seem to be a positive development, except for a major change in the contemporary art of warfare: far more technology and far less (wo)manpower. If anything, Israel will need fewer soldiers in the future – and certainly not more than today – as it invests greater military resources in cutting-edge jet fighters and futuristic technologies (stealth weapons; micro-drones; artificially intelligent, automated weapons).

Paradoxically, a countertrend adds another problem: of all draft-age youngsters in Israel today,........

© The Times of Israel (Blogs)

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