Simulator instructors from both forces meeting in order to learn from one another
An aircrew member during a training flight
“During an operation, they won’t know ahead of time which dangers they’ll have to deal with”
Photo courtesy of Israeli Navy
A navy soldier training in a simulator
Photo courtesy of Shai Levy
Despite the fundamental differences between the Israeli Air Force and the Israeli Navy, the two forces found common ground this week: simulator instructors from both forces met and discussed issues surrounding the training of combat soldiers in order to enrich their training methods in the air and at sea. “The instructors are being given a platform for mutual learning”
The IAF works to strengthen cooperation with all branches of the military, and not just on missions and in training exercises: this week, simulator instructors from the IAF met with simulator instructors from Israeli Navy training and instruction centers in order to learn each other’s methods and to develop the training capabilities of both forces. “The main goal of today was to give the instructors a platform for mutual learning”, explains Captain Shiri Tal, commander of the Instruction Exploration and Development Division at the training squadron. “We wanted to allow the instructors to explore, ask questions, and to open their minds to new, unfamiliar things. Although we didn’t expect to get definitive answers, it was important for us to open these issues up to discussion”.
During the meeting, the participants discussed differences in instruction methods between the forces. For example, at the IAF’s training centers, the instructors participate in the debriefings alongside the aircrews participating in the simulation, while the Israeli Navy’s instructors give the participants a real score. Another example of the difference between the instruction methods is the requirement that the soldiers prepare in advance for what is about to happen in simulation: at IAF training centers, the instructors choose to prepare the trainees exactly for the challenges they will face during the simulation, while the Israeli Navy instructors only give general intelligence assessments and the trainees are expected to be ready for any surprises that may come along. “We want to prepare them for the moment of truth”, explains Corporal Ronny Winkler, instructor of the instructors of the missile boat simulator in the Israeli Navy. “During an operation, they won’t know ahead of time which dangers they’ll have to deal with. We give them basic information, such as general intelligence assessments and the weather”.
Despite the fundamental differences between both forces, the organizers of the meeting managed to bridge the gaps and make the participants connect with one another through the similarities in their field. “I think what was great about this meeting today was that while we came from very different places, and each side didn’t fully understand how the other side works, nonetheless, we managed to break out of the routine, got a different perspective, learned from one another”, adds Corporal Winkler. “This meeting definitely opens up your mind. Many issues came up that we don’t discuss and we would be happy to continue to cooperate with them and to learn”.