Chief of the General Staff: The People You Serve and Protect Thank You

High ranking officials participated in a special ceremony marking completion of the most recent Officer’s Training Course

Date: 01/08/2010, 3:57 PM     Author: Tammy Habteyes

Soldiers from a variety of combat units including the Givati Brigade, the Golani Brigade, the Armored Corps, and the Combat Engineering Corps gathered at the Bahd 1 Officer’s Training Base for a ceremony marking their graduation from the Officers’ Training Course and their transition from soldiers into officers. During the ceremony, proud families were prepared with banners and t-shirts praising their graduating officer. As each new officer passed by, a wave of cheers arose from the crowd.

“That’s my son, Roey, he’s from the Givati Brigade. I was an officer when I was in the army and so was my father. Roey is continuing the family tradition!” exclaimed one of the fathers who came from Jerusalem to see his eldest son achieve officer’s rank. He continued, “Roey is going to be stationed in Gaza now, he doesn’t even get a vacation after finishing this course. He wants to start his new task right away.”

The new officers entered Bahd 1 as regular soldiers; they were all handpicked by their commanders to go through the special officers’ training. In fact, the Commander of the Officers’ Training School, Col. Yehuda Fuchs, told the new officers: “Here at Bahd 1, we don’t create officers; we shape the leadership qualities that you already posses.” During their many months in Bahd 1, the trainees faced many challenging activities including intense physical fitness, educational seminars, leadership training, workshops in commanding and much more.

A number of guests of honor spoke at the graduation ceremony, including Commander of the Officers’ Training School, Col. Yehuda Fuchs, Commander of the GOC Army Headquarters Maj. Gen. Sami Turgeman, Minister of Defense Ehud Barak and Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, who praised the new officers and said, “For all that you’ve given to your country, the people you serve and protect thank you.”

Maj. Gen. Sami Turgeman said, “While in Bahd 1 you were tested in commanding and leadership. You are now responsible for your soldiers, yourself and the country of Israel. Your success will be based upon what you’ve learned here. Take care of your soldiers, discover the courage to lead.”