Israel has reportedly introduced a system called Identify & Alert (I&A) that tracks troops’ whereabouts and locations where they can be subjected to enemy fire in real time. This would give the Jewish nation a considerable technological advantage on the battlefield.
Israeli military forces have repeatedly encountered unexpected hostilities from various players, making it impossible to forecast attacks.
Israel has deployed the system on the fronts of Gaza, Lebanon, and Syria to counter threats effectively. Two top IDF officials offered the platform details, outlining the system’s current workings and future implications on the battlefield.
According to a senior Israeli military official quoted in Newsweek, “we [Israeli military] can identify all the soldiers with ‘Torch-X’ (a command and control system belonging to Elbit Systems Ltd).”
Elbit Systems Ltd. is an international defense electronics business with its headquarters in Israel that works on numerous defense projects worldwide. The company developed a range of air, land, and marine systems for both military and commercial use, including some of the most advanced platforms used by the IDF.
The Gaza Battalion of the IDF J6 and Cyber Defense Directorate’s outgoing commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel Idan Hariri, informed the media outlet that they had begun a procedure of characterization, investigation, and development with the “Matzpen” Unit (Unit for Military Command, Control, and Operational Systems).
He went on to say that the technology can identify lines of vulnerability to anti-tank missile fire. Additionally, the Israeli military has integrated a computerized map with this system.
The device can instantly alert the situation room and the soldier on the ground when troops are approaching an area with a threat from anti-tank missiles. The Israeli military has evaluated locations down to a few meters to determine where they are vulnerable and where they are not.
The Deployment On The Battlefield
The report revealed that the system was first used in combat in August 2022 during Operation “Breaking Dawn.” During the three-day operation, Israel carried out roughly 150 airstrikes against the Gaza Strip.
Before Operation “Breaking Dawn,” according to Hariri, the IDF ran several drills to familiarize Israeli troops with the technology and the operating procedure. However, he pointed out that the IDF has only “proved that the I&A System saves lives” during the actual operation.
The Breaking Dawn operation’s objectives included restoring Israeli deterrence and undermining Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s capabilities to stop the terror group from attacking Israel. Israeli intelligence reported that PIJ intended to target Israeli citizens close to the Gaza border with anti-tank missiles and snipers.
The Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, which controls Gaza, stayed out of the battle. Israel also avoided provoking Hamas to evade a larger-scale conflict.
At the time, Hamas reportedly had no wish to obstruct Gaza’s reconstruction or its attempts to upgrade its arsenal after the conflict in May 2021.
The latest report noted that I&A System had been incorporated near the border with Lebanon, where threats from the Hezbollah movement and the Gaza front exist. Additionally, it is being placed close to Syria, where Iranian personnel and other groups with ties to Tehran have been reported to operate.
The system takes the place of the traditional radio communications check-in method. The units can converse and provide system commands using an internal chat that resembles WhatsApp, a well-known messaging service.
According to Lieutenant Colonel Mark Mendelman, the I&A System also provides information on the nature and scope of the identified alert and the type of terrain on which the IDF forces are operating to provide a comprehensive picture of the threat situation.
Lieutenant Colonel Mark Mendelman leads the IDF’s command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) research and development (R&D) branch dubbed as “Sigma.”
Mendelman also highlighted the necessity of keeping an eye on the human factor. He said that systems are typically accurate, but there are human errors, and that’s the most significant disadvantage every time new technology is introduced.
He explained that the I&A System considers it, combining a complicated setup of redundant safeguards with a generally straightforward user interface.