As many as 80 percent of the soldiers in the Southern Region’s Ordnance Supply Unit are women according to the latest figures released by the IDF.
Both the army and the air force are attracting more women from the religious sector as well, by training them for particularly responsible technical jobs. Some are entering the air force, where they are being trained in the field of electronic engineering. A new army intelligence program encourages religious women to enlist in groups where they can maintain a religious environment while they serve.
The soldiers who serve as vehicle electricians are responsible for maintaining all their unit’s vehicles.
“Up until six months ago, we would rarely take women for the position,” said the southern region’s department commander Warrant Officer Gilad Nahum. “Today there is a course for female electricians in Bahad 20 (an education base) and they have been serving here for over a year.”
He added that 80 percent of the soldiers on his base are women, “and they’re excellent. I was apprehensive at first, but they proved to me that there is no difference between men and women. I never heard one complaint about ruining their nails.”
For the women, working in vehicle maintenance is far preferable to being in an office working in clerical support. “The knowledge and understanding we gained in this field is something we wouldn’t have gotten in our everyday lives,” explains a soldier named Zahavit. “In the future, we can use these skills even when we come across simple problems.
“It will be also save us a lot of money,” she added.