The community of Modiin-Maccabim-Reut has the highest number of Israel Defense Forces recruits, both among men and women, according to figures released Thursday by the IDF Personnel Directorate.
The list, which includes dozens of communities, ranks Tel Aviv at the 53rd place among men and 27th place among women.
The figures, which will be presented to the communities' mayors next week, are comprised of three parameters: The recruitment rate in the community (50% of the final grade), the number of combat soldiers and the number of officers (25% of the final grade each).
Modiin-Maccabim-Reut tops the list among men, with a final grade of 64.7%, followed by Hod Hasharon, Ness Ziona and Yavne (57.1%). Two communities located beyond the Green Line were ranked 10th and 11th – Ma'aleh Adumim (55.2%) and Ariel (54.8%). The southern city of Eilat came in 23rd (52.9%), while Tel Aviv was ranked 53rd with a final grade of 45.3%.
The data show that 70.5% of young Tel Aviv residents join the IDF, compared to the national average of 74.8%. Some 32.4% of them become fighters (national average – 39.5%), and 8% end up as officers (national average – 8%).
Jerusalem was ranked 58th with a final grade of 32.8%, and Bnei Brak came in last with 18.2%. Judea and Samaria has a higher recruitment rate than the national average.
'Crack in people's army model'
Major-General Avi Zamir, head of the IDF Personnel Directorate, said Thursday that "the IDF is still the army of the people with high motivation to serve, but we are already seeing a crack in this model and we must ensure that this crack does not become wider."
Talking to reporters about the November 2010 recruitment, Major-General Zamir said that about 50% of men who are required to serve in the army – between the ages of 18 to 40 – have not completed their compulsory or reserve service. According to Zamir, this figure is expected to reach 60% in 2010.
Most of the growth stems from the number of haredi recruits who have been exempted from military service under the "Torah is his profession" clause, which stood at 9.6% in 2006, reached 13% in 2010, and is expected to go up to about 20% in 2020.
Most young women who are not drafted declare they are religious. Their rate is currently 35% and is expected to grow. The IDF supports a law which may require young women who declare that they are religious to prove that they have studied in a religious girls' high school.
The Personnel Directorate chief added that alongside the worrying data there were some significant and positive trends among the ultra-Orthodox community, minorities and different populations, and that it was possible to recruit additional people while exerting social and national efforts.
The motivation for combat service continues, with 74.2% of the recruits with combat fitness expressing their desire to serve as fighters – compared to 73.7% last November and 67.2% in November 2008. The high motivation is also apparent in the desire to participate in an officers' course.
A rise has also been recorded in the number of volunteers who are unable to serve in the army for medical reasons. In addition, some of the hesder yeshiva soldiers will be drafted for two years instead of the customary 18-month service.
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