Israelis rush to volunteer for local alert squads

Hundreds of new alert squads are expected to be established throughout the country with residents training and patrolling to protect their local communities
Yuval Haninovich|
Residents of many Israeli cities have decided to volunteer for local alert squads present in their communities in order to protect their homes and neighbors. As a result, many civilians across the country were recruited to the IDF Home Front Command, received firearms, and began training and patrols.
<< Follow Ynetnews on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | TikTok >>
More stories:
Alert squads, which were initially established only in cities situated on or in close proximity to Israel's borders have recently expanded to other cities throughout the country, with efforts undergoing to establish 347 new squads in the coming weeks.
3 View gallery
כיתות הכוננות
כיתות הכוננות
Alert squad training
Since last week, alert squads have been established in cities including Ramla, Nof Hagalil, Elad, Acre, Nahariya, Karmiel, Ma'alot Tarshiha, Ashkelon, Eilat, Rosh HaAyin, Harish, Dimona, Kiryat Gat, Shoham, and Modi'in, with more expected to be established throughout the country.
In Ganei Tikva located in central Israel, over 140 residents volunteered for new alert squads established in the city following Hamas’ murderous attack against the country.
The alert squad, which serves as a special force under the command of the IDF Home Front Command, began its operation as a reinforcement for security forces, while also working with the police. The armed volunteers patrol the area and contribute to the residents’ personal security, while coordinating with a municipal security center that receives reports about incidents from the local community.
Attorney Omer Shalomovich, who usually works in a large law firm, decided to volunteer as well, bringing with him the knowledge he gained over decades in the IDF as a division commander. "I was discharged at 51 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel,” he said. “And now I’ve decided to volunteer alongside others from my community.”
3 View gallery
כיתות הכוננות
כיתות הכוננות
Alert squad in a firing range
Yaniv Angel, 54, who served as a police officer for decades and currently serves as Ganei Tikva’s deputy mayor, was recruited to lead the alert squad. "You don’t forget what’s in your DNA,” he said.
"We’re here and are prepared for any incidents that may occur. My daughter serves in the IDF in southern Israel, and she couldn't believe it when my wife sent a photo of me in the family group chat wearing a military uniform and carrying a weapon,” he added.
Angel’s neighbor and squad member, Attorney Eli Shimon, was recruited to the alert squad on Tuesday. “Everyone who joined the squad has previous combat experience from the military,” he said. "Once the IDF Home Front Command approved the squad’s establishment, each of us was called to be equipped with a weapon. We’re here for the sake of our community."
Ganei Tikva isn’t the only city where an alert squad was recently established, as Modi'in's squad also began training on Sunday. "My main mission as mayor is to take care of my residents. The municipalities were the first to take action when the war started, and we’ll continue supporting the country as needed," Haim Bibas, Modi‘in’s mayor, said.
3 View gallery
ועידת החינוך
ועידת החינוך
Haim Bibas
(Photo Dana Kopel)
Bibas added, "It’s important for the IDF Home Front to function to enable the army to carry out its mission. The alert squads offer a significant force in helping security forces in the city, while keeping the residents of our community feeling safe and secure.”
The missions of Modi’in’s alert squad include locating and rescuing trapped civilians, providing first aid, identifying and neutralizing threats, signaling and keeping citizens away from incidents, extinguishing minor fires, guiding citizens, assisting emergency services, and gathering information.
The commenter agrees to the privacy policy of Ynet News and agrees not to submit comments that violate the terms of use, including incitement, libel and expressions that exceed the accepted norms of freedom of speech.