When visiting Israel for the first time, it is hard to miss numbers of young Israelis, dressed in olive-green and carrying a weapon by their side, – the conscripts of the Israel Defense Forces. They seem to be everywhere – on public transportation, in banks, cafes, shops, and bus stations.
At first the presence of armed youth might be intimidating, but with time, comes the understanding that they are on your side, ready not only to protect, but also to provide first aid, answer questions and help in any other way. When I was lost in Haifa and needed to make a phone call, but had no battery left, a young female soldier handed me her cellphone without hesitation.
+ Read more