Are Israeli Teachers Armed?
This is a question that I’ve been hearing a lot of misinformation about teachers in Israel being armed since the terrible shooting in Newton. Here are the facts…
Teachers in Israel do not necessarily carry guns. It definitely is not a government policy to do so. But that having been said, they CAN carry guns and almost all of them are trained in shooting guns. There are generally government hired armed school guards in front of EVERY school in Israel…and there are armed individuals walking every street in Israel.
It’s complicated, but there are three types of civilian gun licenses in Israel. Self defense, hunting and collectors. Mind you almost everybody has been in the military and may be eligible to take home their military issued rifle (depending on unit, rank and reason)
Here are some of the criteria for getting a gun permit in Israel: http://jpfo.org/filegen-a-m/israel-firearms.htm
Remember Israel has a draft system where by every 18 year old male is required to serve in the army for 3 years and women for 2 years (yes, women! It is the ONLY country in the world that drafts women into it’s ranks not during wartime!). After the active duty all men are required to be in the reserves until age 40-45. So like I said, almost everyone in the country knows basic combat skills, how to operate a firearm and basic first aid. Additionally, they have a different mentality, being confronted by constant threats, that anyone, anywhere and at anytime may be a danger.
With all that in mind, Israelis have never had a school shooting perpetrated by one of their own. (there have been cases of school shootings by the hands of terrorists, see Ma’alot – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ma%27alot_massacre)
I should also mention that during any class trips, it is required to have an armed escort with the kids at all times. Israel takes their children’s safety and security seriously!