Thursday 17 December 2020 - 12:50

One Third Of ‘Israeli’ Youths Avoid Military Service Citing Mental Health Problems

Story Code : 904361
One Third Of ‘Israeli’ Youths Avoid Military Service Citing Mental Health Problems
Brig. Gen. Amir Vadamni, head of the ‘Israeli’ occupation forces Personnel Directorate's Planning and Personnel Management Division, told the committee that "the numbers of exemptions from military service are going up steadily, and the most worrying data is about the number of exemptions issued for mental health problems."

In 2018, 7.9% of all potential recruits received exemptions for medical or mental health reasons. In 2019, that number rose to 9%. The projection for 2020 is that 11.9% of potential recruits this year will have received exemptions on medical grounds or for reasons of mental health.

Translated into numbers, some 2,000 potential recruits this year were exempted on physical or mental health grounds before even enlisting. Since the percentage of exemptions for medical issues has not changed dramatically, most of the increased exemptions are issued on grounds of mental health issues.

Vadamni presented an analysis of the data and told the committee that "The generation of recruits has changed its profile and there is high awareness of psychological evaluation that was not common in the past, but there is social [also] social legitimacy for not serving in the ‘Israeli’ military. The ethos of service is being eroded."

In effect, the numbers presented above indicate that one out of every eight potential recruits in 2020 will have been exempted from military service. This is in addition to the 16% of potential recruits who claim exemption as yeshiva students, meaning that one-third of the Zionist youths do not enlist in the military. Of those who do enlist, 11% do not complete their service and are discharged early.

Vadamni stressed that "there is an industry of issuing exemptions from military service. Pay around $460, and you're released. There is growing social legitimacy to not serve, especially not in combat roles."