War on Gaza has “disabled” as many as 20,000 Israeli soldiers, estimates show
01/19/2024 // Ethan Huff // Views

The number of Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers who have been wounded fighting in Gaza is much higher than earlier figures suggested.

Israeli media outlet Yediot Ahronoth reported that at least 12,500 Israeli soldiers are now recognized as "disabled" due to their participation in trying to take back Gaza for Israel.

This "gloomy forecast," as the outlet described it, was presented by a company hired by Israel's defense ministry to conduct an assessment of troop injuries. Keep in mind that the 12,500 disabled figure is considered to be conservative – the true number could be as high as 20,000.

Right now, the Israeli defense ministry's rehabilitation department is treating 60,000 injured Israeli soldiers. At least 5,000 of them were admitted to the department in 2023, including 3,400 just since the October 7 Hamas attack.

It must be stressed that both the 12,500 and 20,000 figures represent only Israeli soldiers, and not Israeli civilians, the injury and death tolls of which are managed by other entities.

(Related: The Washington Post has retracted the false October 7 rape claims made by Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant.)

Israel massively underreporting soldier injuries

The official injury figure from Israel's defense ministry is just 3,000 soldiers since October 7, while the Israeli army itself is reporting an even lower figure of just 2,300 soldier injuries since October 7.

These figures are far lower than the 12,500 or 20,000 figures being reported by other entities whose job it is to track such things independently. Why is Israel trying to hide the true number of injuries among IDF soldiers? Could it be that the Jewish state is not doing as well in its Gaza mission as initially expected?

Discrepancies in the injury toll have been coming to light a lot recently, especially as hospitals throughout Israel report far more injuries than the official injury tolls suggest.

According to Yediot Ahronoth, another reason why Israel might be underreporting the number of soldier injuries is because of the financial and logistical challenges of treating all these disabled soldiers, which makes the Israeli government look bad.

Israel could consequently face new cases similar to that of Itsik Saidian, an Israeli soldier who fought in Israel's 2014 war on Gaza. Saidian infamously set himself on fire in 2021 outside the defense ministry's rehabilitation office, stating that he felt "humiliated during every contact" with the ministry.

"It is clear that the problem is money, money, money," one incensed commenter wrote about the situation in Israel.

"There is hardly enough money to stroke the ultra-Orthodox and Bibi-ists, so the soldiers? Not really," wrote another about how just like in the United States, military servicemen in Israel are mistreated.

"If the Ministry of Defense starts taking care of its disabled properly, it will be less bad," suggested another.

"Bibi, you have brought a historical disaster upon us," wrote another outraged Israeli about the situation.

"Increase the budget for the treatment of the disabled within the Ministry of Defense," suggested another.

"A re-examination should be done for those recognized in the last two years," suggested another. "Everything was due to media pressure and the recognition was systematic. Thousands of post-traumatics entered at high percentages just to silence the area. Unnecessary, harmful, and it overloads the system."

Another Israeli expressed outrage about the IDF's outsized response to the Hamas attack, calling Israel a "cruel country that caused tens of thousands of wounded and dead and economic damages in an avoidable and unnecessary attack."

"It was possible to end the conflict on the first day," this person added. "World history also proves that avoiding a major retaliation is the preferred way."

The latest news about Israel's war on Gaza can be found at WWIII.news.

Sources for this article include:



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