Presenting IDF incorporation of females to French Deputy Chief of Staff

During her visit to France, Maj. Gen. Orna Barbivai presented IDF (Zahal) ethics: equal opportunities and incorporation of females in significant roles

Date: 13/12/2011, 1:00 PM     Author: Tamara Ben Natan

Head of the Manpower Directorate, Maj. Gen. Orna Barbivai recently returned from a visit in France during which she met with the French Deputy Chief of Staff, the French Deputy Head of the Manpower Directorate, the Head of the Association for the Wellbeing of French Soldiers, and representatives from the French Jewish community.

Maj. Gen. Barbivai, the first female IDF (Zahal) Maj. Gen, presented the incorporation of women in the IDF (Zahal), the vision of equal opportunities, and the ethical values fundamental to the Israeli military. She elaborated on the growing trend of women serving in significant positions in the IDF (Zahal), including a variety of combat, field instruction, classified intelligence and other units.

According to the French Deputy Chief of Staff, only 15% of the French military are females and even fewer are appointed high ranking positions. Whereas females make up 33% of IDF (Zahal) soldiers, 51% of IDF (Zahal) officers both in their regular and reserve service.

Maj. Gen. Barbivai also presented a professional branch in the IDF (Zahal) Manpower Directorate responsible for tracking and assisting injured soldiers and bereaved families, as well as locating missing soldiers. The French army does not have a parallel branch and Maj. Gen. Barbivai suggested cooperation in creating such a branch.

“The French Jewish communities were welcoming and appreciative. Their concern for IDF (Zahal) soldiers and commanders is absolute. I see the French Jewish community as essential, and an important partner,” said Maj. Gen. Barbivai.