‘Glitch’ Sends Emergency Call-Up to Thousands of Reserve Soldiers

Israeli soldiers. (Flash90)

A mass emergency “Tzav 8” call-up of reserve soldiers by the IDF Thursday morning turned out to be a mistake, the army said in a statement. The “glitch” in the automated messaging system that called up what is believed to be thousands of reserve soldiers was “a serious matter that will be fully investigated.”

Media reports Thursday morning cited many reserve soldiers reporting that they were called up for duty. Thursday is Israel Independence Day, and many of the reserve soldiers were at home with their families, preparing to celebrate the day. About a half hour after the messages were sent out, the army recalled them, telling the soldiers to stay home.

The incident comes against the background of rising tension in the north, as Iran vowed this week to avenge an Israeli attack on an Iranian air base last week. The army did not announce how many reserve soldiers received the message, but media reports estimated the number to be in the thousands. The army said it would investigate all angles to determine the background of the error, including human error and cyber-security issues, although the army said that it did not believe the system had been hacked.