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COMING UP:Share Opener Variant 2



>> These Arab soldiers are choosing to fight for the Jewish state. They joined the Israel Defense Forces, an army which has fought almost all its conflicts against Arab nations. It's mostly made up of Jewish personnel, but now a small number of Arabs are signed up. Reuters' Rinat Harash explains their motivation.
>> The Army told us that most of them decide to enlist because of practical reasons. It helps them to integrate into Israeli society, to feel more like an equal, to learn the language to have an easier time getting a job later. But some of them actually do it because of their values, they think that it's their duty to serve in the army, and they want to contribute.
That's what they told us.>> Most of them are Bedouin, a community native to southern Israel. But some rather Arab citizens of Israel, descendants of Palestinians who stayed during tha 1948 war, when the state was founded. When hundreds of thousands of their brethren fled or forced from their homes were advancing Israeli troops.
>> Obviously there are challenges especially when they need to conduct normal security, military work along the Gaza border, or along the West Bank in wars or operations. But, they told us that it's not an issue for them and the army even said that it never encountered a situation where one of these soldiers decided to leave because of such a conflict.
>> The military does not report exact number of Arab volunteers, but official say there is several hundreds among the 175,000 active personnel.
a time when Israel is expanding it's settlements in the West Bank, and Palestinians fear they may never end up with their own states, some Israeli Arabs see this as betrayal.
But these volunteers say they're prepared to face any criticism in a bid to belong.