IDF Fields Digital Ground Army


The “smaller, smarter army” that the IDF is aiming for will include the Digital Ground Army (DGA), an advanced command-and-control system that will enable infantry battalion commanders to play a more decisive role, The Jerusalem Post reports.

The system generates and updates a computer map of all friendly and enemy deployments in a given area, representing a synthesis of data from tank operators, drones, infantry units and surveillance posts, according to military sources.

“The one who will win the next war is the battalion commander, not a whole division that will invade an enemy capital. We want to give the battalion commander these command-and-control systems, without overburdening them,” the source said.

This will mean that battalion commanders will have an operational independence that would have been impossible previously.

Within seconds, updated data on targets appears on the DGA map, giving commanders a comprehensive view of the unfolding situation in real time.

“To grant these capabilities to the lower tactical level is precious. I’d even say very precious. It’s completely new. This is a dramatic change,” the source said.

Twelve classes at IDF bases have been established to train commanders to use the system.

“It gives them more independence, and lowers chances of friendly-fire incidents. The commander can now be in his armored personnel carrier near the front line, but still know what his command post behind him is seeing. He can be close to a forward company and still look back to get a full picture of the situation. This relieves him of the need to stay back at the post.”

DGA is already being used for routine border patrols.

“We know it’ll work during war, because it works now 24/7 in continuous security, in all arenas. It works all day,” the source stated.