The Herev Battalion is composed exclusively of Druze soldiers and at the moment guards the northern region of the country. The battalion just completed its combat training course. Here, we bring you exclusive photos from their final beret march.

The “Herev” Battalion is an infantry battalion, unique because it is composed exclusively of soldiers from the Druze community. Today, 83 percent of this community chooses to enlist in the IDF (Zahal), and the majority choose to serve in combat units. 87 percent are drafted into the “Herev” Battalion.

Last week, the battalion’s new recruits finished their training course with a beret march. Throughout the 45 kilometers of the march, they passed through their own villages, where families and friends laid out tables of food for them. This was more your average beret march: it’s a symbol for the Druze community and the pride they have for their soldiers and their families.

The march begins with a debriefing before the soldiers set off.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

The march is about to begin and the soldiers are all feeling good.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

Families and friends have made arrangements to be present in honor of the event. 

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

Back to business: the commander calls everyone over and gives them their orders to prepare to start the march.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

On the to-do list: checking all of the soldiers’ weapons, equipment, and uniform, as well as a last minute photo to immortalize the moment.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

 

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

Last instructions before departure.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

Setting off.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

Even in 95 degree heat, putting your head down is not an option.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

The soldiers’ arrival in the first village is a real party. They’re welcomed by their families and friends, who bring refreshments and sandwiches.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

Their mothers have prepared food, and the hungry soldiers are wolfing it down.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

A little sister has come to congratulate her brother.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

The break is over. It’s time to continue the march.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

After 10 hours of marching, and with 9 villages and 45 kilometers behind them, the march has reached its end and the soldiers can proudly wear their well-deserved berets.

Exclusive Photos: The Druze Battalion in Action

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