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Regional Commands Flags (Israel)

Last modified: 2021-04-03 by rob raeside
Keywords: regional commands | israel defence forces |
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Background

A (military) Command is a static jurisdiction that encompasses units from many branches of the services. A Command is the highest level of geographic jurisdiction below a nation's overall forces. In the case of overseas/foreign operations, a Command can include multi-national forces, and can encompass the physical territory of more than one nation. Those latter nations may or may not have any participation in the Command.
T.F. Mills, 1 February 2021


Northern Command (Pikud Tzafon)

The Northern Command has a deer on its emblem.
Nahum Shereshevsky
, 3 July 1998

The Emblem

image from wikimapia.org/11423256/IDF-Northern-Command

located by T.F. Mills, 1 February 2021


Battery A, Battalion 405

image located by Elias Granqvist, 18 March 2021

This tricolour is the flag of Battery A, Battalion 405, according to Shay Shemesh in the FaceBook group "Flags and Emblems of Israel". He sent me the attached image and pointed out that it is seen from the other side in the image.
Elias Granqvist, 18 March 2021

image located by Bill Garrison and Esteban Rivera, 18 March 2021

Regarding the white flag below the Israeli flag, I am unfamiliar with it. The caption reads: "The Israeli side of the gate to the Tzofar enclave near Jordan, c. April 2020."  (source).
Bill Garrison, 18 March 2021

The flag in question is seen here cropped and in a much higher resolution. (source)
The picture caption reads "The entrance gate from the Israeli side to the enclave. Today the transfer of the enclave was delayed in order to allow Israeli farmers to pick their crops and move the equipment to Israeli territory." (Photo by Alex Levac) (The original text in Hebrew reads: שער הכניסה מהצד הישראלי למובלעת, היום. העברת המובלעת עוכבה על מנת לאפשר לחקלאים הישראלים לקטוף את גידוליהם ולהעביר את הציוד לשטח הישראליצילום: אלכס ליבק).
It is an article originally published (in its online version) on April 30, 2020 regarding the hand over of the Tzofar (צוֹפָר) enclave. "After the peace agreement (Treaty of Peace Between the State of Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan) between Israel and Jordan, Israel transferred a portion of the land area in Tzofar to Jordanian control, known as Al Ghamr (الغمر), but Israel rented the land so that Israeli workers from the Moshav could continue to cultivate it. The 25-year renewable lease (stipulated in Annex I of the already mentioned Treaty) would end in 2019. The Jordanian government announced its intention to end the lease. The treaty gives Jordan the right to do so only on one condition-that a one-year prior notice is given, which coincided with the announcement in October 2018. The land was occupied during the Six Day War (1967) and the enclave was effectively returned in April, 2020." (source #1)   (source #2)   (source #3)   (source #4)   (source #5)
In the image attached above, one can notice that there are actually two sets of five flags each. Both sets of flags have the same flags displayed. That is: the flags in the background are the same as the ones in the foreground. The ones I can identify are those of the Artillery Corps and Israel. That leaves us with actually three more flags to identify although we are mostly referring to the one that displays the tiger logo. Since this area of operations falls directly under the jurisdiction of the Southern Command, it may well be, but not exclusively, a Military Unit dependent on either the Artillery Corps or the Southern Command. However, it can also be a support Unit (perhaps Battalion or Company-size) since a quick look into major Units (i.e. Divisions and Brigades) did not return a positive identification.
If we have somebody that can read the Hebrew inscription in the flag displaying the tiger logo, maybe we can identify it properly.
Esteban Rivera, 18 March 2021

This tricolour is the flag of Battery A, Battalion 405, according to Shay Shemesh in the FaceBook group "Flags and Emblems of Israel". He sent me the attached image and pointed out that it is seen from the other side in the image.
Elias Granqvist, 18 March 2021

It is definitely the same emblem, but the original flag in question is not a tricolor flag, so it needs further clarification as to which battery it belongs to. Notice there might be what appears to be a small blue stripe at the bottom of the white flag in question. This might indicate which battery it is within the larger artillery Corps.
I guess we can say it's a plain white bed-sheet with an unidentified Israeli artillery corps logo centered on it? A closer look indicates that there is no blue stripe on it, that apparently belonging to the flag behind it, which is also unidentified. Counting poles, it looks like maybe a nine flag display, doesn't it? The red/black diagonally divided flag looks to have a logo or shield on the bottom left of the black fly, but we were not asked to identify that flag.
Pete Loeser
, 21 March 2021

image from Esteban Rivera, 23 March 2021 (cropped image from the original, mentioned above)

In order to put an end to the discussion of what flags are to be identified, as I have already mentioned in previous comments, the original picture shows two sets of flags (both of them show five flags each). The flag to be put up for discussion is part of the set of flags displayed in the foreground, more specifically the flag to the right of the Armored Corps of the IDF.
Now, having clarified that, the proper identification: as already mentioned by Elias Granqvist, he posted the query on March 18, 2021 on the "Flags and Emblems of Israel" Facebook group. In turn, Shay Shemesh was the one who positively identified the flag in question, as that of Battalion 405, Battery A (גדוד 405, סוללה A), both in a public remark to the question and a private message to Elias. Another picture that shows the Battery's emblem (and the corresponding membership to that Regiment) can be seen here (fifth emblem from left to right). (source).

image from Esteban Rivera, 23 March 2021

In this picture are some other elements of the same Battalion, in which the flag in question is seen as the first from left to right.

image from Esteban Rivera, 23 March 2021

Last, but not least, here's a military ceremony of change of command of the Golan Artillery Regiment, held in November, 2020, in which most military subordinate units' emblems are seen, of which, all have its respective flag. Please note that the words "Battalion" and "Regiment" in this context are exactly the same.

image from Esteban Rivera, 23 March 2021

Now regarding the flags on the background, which is not the intention of the original post, but now that we're discussing the topic, are all units that are part of the same Battalion, that is, the 405th, as can be seen at this source in which a set of flags (image #12f) are seen indoors.

The previous Facebook posts mentioned by me may be considered as semi-official, since they are from the 405's Facebook page as the name suggests - "gdood405" or גדודון405 (transliterated as "gdood," or in English as "Battalion 405.") Further information on this Regiment is seen here. Notice that the 405th Battalion is subordinated to the 282 Fire Brigade (חטיבת האש 282).
Finally, here's the official IDF entry on the 282 Fire Brigade (חטיבת האש 282), which in turn is part of the "Volcanic design" (36th Division) or "אוגדה 36) "עוצבת געש), which ultimately belongs to the Northern Command.
One final suggestion: this whole post should then be relocated to the Northern Command entry, since this discussion is about flags of that particular military unit.
Esteban Rivera, 23 March 2021


Central Command (Pikud Merkaz)

Previous flag
image by Željko Heimer, 15 August 2008

I was watching some documentary on TV today, when a scene from the early years of Israel was showed, with an unidentified flag. The report was about proclamation on Israeli independence in 1948, and some military parade was shown, where in front of units this flag was carried - very similar to Israeli naval ensign with some device in fly end, much in the way the defacement was made in British tradition. The flag passed away from the screen too fast to recognize the defacement, but I believe it was shaped as a lion in a circle.
Željko Heimer
, 20 June 1998

I searched in my archives and in a wonderful article from Zvi Ruder in Raven, some similar flags are quoted. The lion appear in many military flags and is named the lion of Megiddo. One of the flags or standards of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is blue-purple with white triangle with the base in the hoist and within a blue Magen David; in the fly a badge (but no the lion; seems a fox [See: Pikud Darom, ed.]). I don't know if that is the lion of Megiddo.
Jaume Ollé
, 2 July 1998

I have a copy of the article that Zvi Ruder sent me recently. The illustration there (Fig. 2) is of a lion on a seal found in Megiddo. The lion on the badge/flag of Central Command represents the Lion of Judea, as in the City of Jerusalem emblem/flag. The Megiddo lion is not a symbol, the name refers to the artistic form. It might have been the artistic inspiration for the Central Command lion, which is different from the City of Jerusalem lion (the former is passant, the latter is rampant, as much as we can apply heraldic terms here).
The fox is the emblem of Southern Command, representing Samson's Foxes. (To complete the picture, Northern Command has a deer on its emblem). These three animals can be seen in flags/badges of many army units that are associated with the commands. But all of them are ground forces.
Megiddo is in the Jezreel Valley, in the north of Israel, and due to its strategic place saw many battles. In 1918 it was the place of a decisive battle between the British and the Ottomans, and General Allenby won the title Lord of Megiddo. Also, Megiddo is thought to be Armageddon.
Nahum Shereshevsky
, 3 July 1998

At www.historama.com, there is a photo showing three jeeps with the the three regional commands flags of the time with explanation: "An Israeli army military parade around 1949-50, in which the flag of the three main regional commands are visible on each of the three jeeps: Southern Command ('Pikud Darom'; left), Central Command ('Pikud Merkaz'; center) and Northern Command ('Pikud Tzafon'; right).
So, the flag that Željko saw was a early version of the Central Command flag.
Those flags were replaced at unknown date with the current flags which are crimson with the national flag at the canton and the commands emblem on the fly. The flag is fringed in gold.
Dov Gutterman, 14 August 2008

The Central Command (Pakmaz, the usual abbreviation from Pikud Merkaz) flag from ca. 1950 was blue with a white triangle along the hoist containing a blue Magen David and in the bottom fly the emblem of the Command - a black disk containing a Lion of Megiddo.
Željko Heimer, 15 August 2008

The Emblem

image from www.israelmilitary.com


Southern Command (Pikud Darom)

Previous flag
image by Željko Heimer and Eugene Ipavec, 16 August 2008

I was watching some documentary on TV today, when a scene from the early years of Israel was showed, with an unidentified flag. The report was about proclamation on Israeli independence in 1948, and some military parade was shown, where in front of units this flag was carried - very similar to Israeli naval ensign with some device in fly end, much in the way the defacement was made in British tradition. The flag passed away from the screen too fast to recognize the defacement, but I believe it was shaped as a lion in a circle.
Željko Heimer
, 20 June 1998

I searched in my archives and in a wonderful article from Zvi Ruder in Raven, some similar flags are quoted. The lion appear in many military flags and is named the lion of Megiddo. One of the flags or standards of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is blue-purple with white triangle with the base in the hoist and within a blue Magen David; in the fly a badge (but no the lion; seems a fox, ed.]).
Jaume Ollé
, 2 July 1998

The fox is the emblem of Southern Command, representing Samson's Foxes. (To complete the picture, Northern Command has a deer on its emblem). These three animals can be seen in flags/badges of many army units that are associated with the commands. But all of them are ground forces.
Nahum Shereshevsky
, 3 July 1998

At www.historama.com, there is a photo showing three jeeps with the the three regional commands flags of the time with explanation: "An Israeli army military parade around 1949-50, in which the flag of the three main regional commands are visible on each of the three jeeps: Southern Command ('Pikud Darom'; left), Central Command ('Pikud Merkaz'; center) and Northern Command ('Pikud Tzafon'; right).
So, the flag that Željko saw was a early version of the Central Command flag.
Those flags were replaced at unknown date with the current flags which are crimson with the national flag at the canton and the commands emblem on the fly. The flag is fringed in gold.
Dov Gutterman, 14 August 2008

The Emblem

  image by Eugene Ipavec, 16 August 2008


Homefront Command (Pikud HaOref)

3:4 | 90 cm × 120 cm image by Dov Gutterman

This Civil Defense Force and Regional Defense Units were replaced a decade ago by the Home-front Command. The colours of the home-front command are the same to those appearing in its emblem - blue and orange. Apparently, this emblem is based on the proposed flag in the 1949 Geneva convention for civil defence.
Yaron Ramati, 27 October 2004

Homefront Command (Pikud HaOref) was established in 1992 following the Gulf War and replaced the Civil Defense Force and Regional Defense Units. The command is charged on civil defense, search and rescue etc.  
The command adopted the orange color as it is known internationally as the civil defense color.  
Dov Gutterman, 5 June 2007

The Emblem

    images located by Esteban Rivera, 1 February 2021
Previous emblem; current emblem, source: Wikipedia

Notice that both, on the current emblem (which is really a silhouette of the older version, in black and white, he.wikipedia.org) and the old (he.wikipedia.org/...IDF_Home_Front_Command_Colored_Tag.svg) emblem as well, it features the blue triangle, derived from Geneva Convention Protocol Flags. That is, in Israel, the organization that represents and carries out Civil Defence organization duties is the Home Front Command.

פיקוד העורף (English: HFC, official abbreviation for Home Front Command) was established on February 17, 1992 (http://www.oref.org.il/1045-he/PAKAR.aspx and https://he.wikipedia.org). It is also known as simply "Oref" (derived from its transliteration "Pikud HaOref") and also "Pakar" (derived from the pronunciation in Hebrew of the initials "פיקוד העורף").

For additional information please refer to OREF (official website): https://www.oref.org.il/
HFC (within the IDF website): https://www.idf.il/
Esteban Rivera, 1 February 2021


Local flags

There appear to be local flags for the respective OREF's organization in a given town.

Kiryat Ekron HFC
image located by Esteban Rivera, 1 February 2021
Source: http://www.kiryat-ekron.muni.il

HFC flag for the town of Kiryat Ekron, also spelled Qiryat Eqron.
For additional information go to Kiryat Ekron (official website) https://www.kiryat-ekron.muni.il/
Esteban Rivera, 1 February 2021