Record number of Americans join Israeli army

Monday, August 06, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

A record number of young American Jews have committed to moving to Israel and enlisting in the 2007 Israel Defense Forces (IDF) draft, reported Israel's largest daily newspaper, Yediot Ahronot.

One hundred fifty American Jews between the ages of 18 and 23 will arrive in Israel this month to participate in the draft, and all have requested that the army enlist them in combat units.

Army officials said the number of American Jews who agreed to come serve in the IDF this year surprised them, considering that just last summer Israel was embroiled in a bloody and devastating 34-day war with Lebanon's Hizballah.

The new recruits were described as being “imbued with Zionism and sky-high motivation.”

The arrival of the American volunteers coincides with a social crisis within Israel regarding the growing percentage of young native born Israelis who are dodging the IDF draft.

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