IDF modifies its training based on lessons from Schalit’s captivity


After having completed Gilad Schalit’s debriefing, IDF adjusts its training given to elite soldiers and pilots on how to cope with captivity • IDF impressed with Schalit’s dealing of his 5+ years in Hamas captivity.

By Lilach Shoval


The Israel Defense Forces have made a number of changes to the training it offers elite soldiers and pilots on how to deal with captivity. The changes have been made based on the debriefing of Gilad Schalit.

Gilad Schalit with father Noam after being released from captivity in October 2011. | Photo credit: AFP

Gilad Schalit with father Noam after being released from captivity in October 2011.- Photo: AFP

The IDF recently completed the debriefing of Schalit, who was released in October 2011 after being held captive by Hamas in the Gaza Strip for more than five years. Under the deal, Israel freed more than 1,000 Palestinian and Israeli-Arab prisoners.

Schalit was held in solitatry confinement for the duration of his captivity.

According to a Channel 2 report, the IDF was impressed with how Schalit dealt with the difficulties of being held captive for such a prolonged period of time.

Following Schalit’s release in October, IDF commanders reviewed the “Hannibal Protocol: Rules of Engagement,” which declares that everything possible must be done to prevent soldiers from being abducted – even if it means endangering them.

The “Hannibal Protocol: Rules of Engagement,” drafted while the IDF was still in Lebanon, instructs a soldier on how to act professionally to prevent an attempted abduction. The IDF were concerned, however, that soldiers were being given the impression that a dead soldier is better than a live captured one and so reviewed the protocols.

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