Artillery: September 4, 2004


The Israeli army has a desertion problem, and it has little to do with politics. While there are some Israeli soldiers who desert to protest combat operations in the Palestinian territories, they are a small minority compared to the many men and women who do not show up for service for other reasons (mainly economic or lifestyle related.) Each year, the police go looking for 3-4 percent of the troops (draftees or reservists called up) who are supposed to be on active duty. Last year, that amounted to some 10,000 deserters. Given the choice between doing their military service or getting prosecuted (and face several years in jail), most opt for completing their military service. 


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