20.03.2018 09:24

Military service is necessary when the countries around you don’t want you, says Erasmus student Netta Blass

Autor: Damián Moreno Prado | Kurz: English section | Kategorie: Features and other

Eighteen birthday is a date highlighted in the calendar for the Israeli families. Being eighteen years old means combine the studies with compulsory Military service; it is a challenge that requires effort and a lot of hard work. In the case of Netta Blass, the 25-years-old graduate student of International Relationships, who did Erasmus last semester in Brno, was a call out to achieve a certain position in the Army. Her dream came true but not without sweat. And some tears.

Erasmus is like a treasure box: when you open it you see a lot of jewels, all of them are different from each other but all of them have their charm. In case of Erasmus jewels are cultures and this knowledge of them make you change the angle of your perceptions, because you learn about new ways of living and thinking. Netta Blass is back to Israel after five months of living in a residence in Brno and studying in the Faculty of Social Studies. “Erasmus in Brno has been a fantastic experience for me. The city is good, the university is great but the best thing here is the people that I have known”. Tall, with brown hair, white skin and “smiling eyes”, she looks confident and open-minded during our meeting and by her way of speaking you can perceive a very good virtue: she is attentive and mediates her answers, showing that she is interested in our interview.

She has completed her Master in International Relationships in Brno. Now, after five months, which she defines them, laughing, as a “crazy period”, it is the time when she decides how to establish her life and think about her future. But before making decisions she is back in the Army temporally. “When you finish the service, they can call you in case they need you for operations, logistic stuff or training. They have not called me but I am back because I want to prepare myself in case of an emergency situation. It is not so interesting but it is important to be prepare at all levels”, she explains.

Netta was really excited when she started in the Army. “Some people are afraid of the Military service but I really want to work as a part of the intelligence in my time in the Army”, she says. In Israel men have to service for three years and women, two. Her father, as well as her two sisters, had to live the same situation, each of them with different perspectives. “My middle sister didn’t know what she was going to do. Finally she was a combat, driving a concrete type of car, and she did training for combat. Sometimes we were sad, sometimes we were happy but not afraid”, she explains. The age to start in the Army is usually between eighteen and nineteen years old, after High School. Although there are special cases with different ages, as ultra-Orthodox. “During High School you took tests to comprehend the roll that you would have. All the Israelis take the first exam at the age of sixteen. We took a huge range of exams: physical examinations, analytical skills, computer skills, mental health and physical strength”, she says.

Looking back at those two years in the Army, she does not only remember many good memories but also she shares with us the worst one. From the very first beginning, she had an objective: she wants to become an officer. You must pass a special track of six months if you want to become an officer. After two months she started having bad relationship with her commander. “She said to me that I could not be an officer. It had been my dream since a long time. I just meet this woman before two months and I didn’t want to believe that she could tell me what I should be. She didn’t know me”, she says. She reached it finally. She became an officer because she believed in herself.

She learnt a lot of things during those two years but the most important was that her lived experiences guided her. “It helped me to understand where I want to be, what path should follow as a person and in my academic life. It also makes me more patriotic, understanding that it is necessary”, she says seriously, almost in the only moment of our talk that she leaves her smile aside. In the past Europe was full of borders and conflicts, but now there is time of relatively peace. In the Middle East things are not the same. “You can’t live without the compulsory Military service when countries around you don’t want you, they have their own wars and your country is in conflict too. It is a really complex situation but it is a imperative necessity if I want to have a future in Israel”, Netta finishes.

Klíčová slova: Erasmus, Israel, Brno, Military service


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