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First female Arab soldier joins elite unit 669

Muslim soldier serving as medic on IAF’s special airborne search and rescue unit is candidate to become airborne medic

Yossi Yehoshua
Published: 04.04.08, 13:31 / Israel News

History is being made in the Israel Air Force. A female Arab soldier has joined the IAF’s elite Airborne Combat Search and Rescue Unit 669, for the very first time in this illustrious unit’s history.

 

The soldier currently serves as a medic with the unit, and is also expected to soon receive training to become an airborne medic.

 

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Unit 669 is considered one of the IDF’s premier elite units. Its main function is to rescue and extricate wounded soldiers from combat zones, under heavy enemy fire in most cases. The unit also often helps rescue civilians injured during various catastrophic incidents.

 

Seeing as the unit is typically involved in sensitive, and highly classified, IDF operations, soldiers serving in this unit require an extremely high security classification.

 

A Muslim soldier has consequently never served in this unit in either an administrative or combat capacity, that is until the aforementioned Muslim medic managed to circumvent this barrier as well.

 

The female soldier in question, a resident of an Arab village in northern Israel, volunteered to serve in the IDF, though not obligated to do so. She completed her medic training course with top honors, and was immediately placed with unit 669. The unit was stunned to learn of her Muslim origins, and an investigation later revealed that an error was made concerning her security classification.

 

In spite of this error, the unit’s commander insisted that the medic remain with the unit because of her truly exceptional skills. The soldier will even attend training to become an airborne medic this July. She could very well make history by becoming the first Muslim airborne medic in IDF history.

 

The story of “soldier C.”, first published in Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth two years ago, clearly illustrates just how incredible the feat achieved by the unit 669 medic actually is.

 

“Soldier C”, a Muslim Arab from northern Israel, had finished high school with top honors, and was certified as a civilian pilot before enlisting in the IDF. He aspired to join the IAF and attend a pilot training course, his lifelong dream.

 

“My dream and ultimate ambition is to become a fighter pilot. I know I have the potential and ability to fulfill my dream and serve as a combat pilot with the IAF,” he wrote. “If deemed physically and mentally fit, I ask that I be able to serve in all of the elite units of the IDF, which are open to all other enlisted personnel.”

 

The aspiring pilot’s plea was unheeded by the IDF, however, in spite of a letter of recommendation given to him by his flight instructor, a former major and combat pilot in the IAF. He currently serves with another unit in the IDF. 

 

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