Combat Intelligence Collection Corps
|Field Intelligence Corps|
Flag of the Israeli Combat Intelligence Collection Corps
|Branch||GOC Army Headquarters|
|Role||Reconnaissance and intelligence gathering close to and behind enemy lines|
|Part of||Israel Defense Forces|
|Motto(s)||"Hatzofeh Lifnei Hamahaneh" ("The Scout Ahead of the Camp")|
|Colors||Sand-colored Beret, Black Boots, White & Yellow Flag|
|Brigadier General Eli Pollack|
The Israeli Combat Intelligence Collection Corps (previously known as Field Intelligence Corps) is the newest of the IDF GOC Army Headquarters' five corps, created in April 2000 and tasked with collecting combat intelligence. It is responsible for intelligence units from the battalion level and up to the entire force. Due to the need for collecting combat intelligence and in maintaining observation networks, it is in the midst of expansion.
The corps consists of the following units:
- 414th Nesher (Vulture) Field Intelligence Battalion (Southern Command – Gaza Sector)
- 595th Ait (Eagle) Field Intelligence Battalion (Northern Command – Syria Sector)
- 636th Nitzan (Bud) Field Intelligence Battalion (Central Command)
- 727th Eitam Field Intelligence Battalion (Southern Command – Negev Sector)
- 869th Shahaf (Seagull) Field Intelligence Battalion (Northern Command – Lebanon Sector)
- Field Intelligence School, also known as Center for Reconnaissance and Intelligence.
- Unit Command, in the IDF Central Command in HaKirya, Tel-Aviv
Each battalion includes foot soldiers, soldiers that use specially designed 4×4 vehicles, and women that control different cameras from a control center.
Two weeks after drafting the training commanders decide where each soldier will serve (either Infantry Forces or Mounted Forces) based upon the psychological, physical, and motivational state of the soldier. The best qualified soldiers from the Infantry Forces can then try out for the Combat Intelligence special forces.
- Infantry Forces
- Basic Training 4 months (Rifleman 05) – Combat Intelligence School
- Advanced Training 4 months (Recon Rifleman 07) – Combat Intelligence School
- Unit Training (here each unit has its own training that takes around 2 months) – Northern, Southern and Central command
- Mounted Forces
- Basic Training 2 months (Rifleman 03) – Combat Intelligence School
- Advanced Training 2 months (Recon Rifleman 05) – Combat Intelligence School
- Unit Training (here each unit has its own training that takes around one month) – Northern, Southern and Central command
Israel has a long history of intelligence units and operations, dating back to the Palmach's "German Platoon" (aka the Middle East Commando). After the creation of the IDF, field intelligence units were formed on an ad-hoc basis, by the Regional Commands.
In 1993, the first dedicated field intelligence unit meant for operating in any front, the Yahmam (abbreviation for Target Field Intelligence, also known as the Nitzan Commando), was created. The unit was designated to provide intelligence in real time and sighting enemy targets. It was appended to the GOC Army Headquarters and its soldiers wore black berets, even though they were under the direct command of the General Staff. During the 1982–2000 South Lebanon Conflict, it operated as an elite outfit tasked with collecting combat intelligence. After the February 4, 1997 Israeli helicopter disaster, in which the unit lost two men out of a total of 73 killed, the Supreme Court of Israel instructed to reveal their names, and consequently, the unit's existence was revealed to the public.
The unit was created as a corps in April 2000, under Amnon Sufrin. In late 2008, the GOC Army Headquarters decided to rename it to the "Combat Intelligence Collection Corps" from "Field Intelligence Corps", to emphasize its combat nature and to dissociate itself from the military intelligence directorate to which it was previously professionally subordinate to. The name was changed in November 2009. Additionally, the corps' beret color was changed from dark green (which is associated with military intelligence) to yellow.
Chief Combat Intelligence Officer
The Chief Combat Intelligence Officer is a Brigadier General appointed by the head of the GOC Army Headquarters. As of 2009, the Chief Combat Intelligence Officer is Eli Pollack.
- Cohen, Gili (July 24, 2009). "Start Learning: Instead of Field Intelligence – Combat Intelligence Collection Corps". Bamahane (in Hebrew). No. 2998. p. 15.
- Ben Dror, Arnon (March 25, 2009). "With God's Help: Field Intelligence Corps will be Renamed to Combat Intelligence Collection Corps" (in Hebrew). Israel Defense Forces. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
- "Redesigned Combat Intelligence Collection Corps Aims High" (in Hebrew). Israel Defense Forces. November 23, 2009. Retrieved 2012-04-17.
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