The Israeli Walla news portal has said that the Ramon “limited war” commando unit serving on the Egyptian border has completed an extensive training that lasted for a week, together with the Givati Brigade, an elite brigade of the Israeli infantry. Walla called the training the largest of its kind in ten years.
Under the command of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, the elite commando unit launched guerrilla attacks during the War of Attrition in the 1970s. Today, it is deployed for patrolling the Egyptian border.
Walla quoted Israeli Chief of Staff Benny Gantz as saying, “The training at this moment is essential to maintain the ability to make decisions in case of unexpected and changing combat.” He also said that he is “happy to see the commanders increase the skills of their soldiers in various directions.”
Maariv newspaper said on Thursday that the Israeli army requested to increase its budget by 15 billion shekels to be exclusively allocated for securing the border with Egypt. The paper added that the army is studying how to better equip itself and spread across the border, reminiscent of the notion of the Egyptian front that existed during the 1967 war.
The paper pointed out that since its 1979 peace treaty with Egypt, the Israeli army has been focusing on the northern front with Syria and Lebanon, the Palestinian front in the Gaza Strip and threats from Iran. Now, the paper claims that in light of statements made by Mohamed Morsy prior to the presidential election that he would review the terms of the 1979 treaty, the Israeli army has found itself obliged to change its strategy.
Since the Muslim Brotherhood’s Morsy was officially declared president-elect of Egypt last Sunday, Israeli media has voiced concerns about border security and the fate of the Camp David Peace Accords, which limit Egyptian military presence in Sinai.
Israel has said the border area is uncontrolled and home to militant infiltrators from the Hamas-controlled Gaza strip after two rockets were reportedly launched from Sinai into Israel in April and June 2012, coming after previous attacks on the border area throughout the year.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm