Major Peter Lerner is the spokesman for the Central Command. During this week (April 2-9, 2011), Maj. Lerner will be blogging his experiences from the “Witnesses in Uniform” program, a special program run by the IDF as a way to contribute to commemorating the Holocaust and heroism in the army. Multiple times a year the IDF selects officers from units all over the army and sends them on a one-week journey to Poland. On the trip the delegation members visit extermination camps, concentration camps and memorials to the victims of the Holocaust and the Jewish communities of Eastern Europe. Delegation members include IDF officers, Holocaust survivors, wounded soldiers and members of bereaved families.
“Witnesses in Uniform” was established in 2001 and since then 22 thousand commanders have participated in the program. In 2009, approximately 3,600 commanders from all IDF units took part in the program. The program offers a different perspective to those who were born in the State of Israel and take it for granted. The journey is a major part of the efforts to commemorate the Holocaust and heroism in the IDF, serves as a means of expanding the participants command and ideological identity, and reinforces the sense of mission toward the state and the army.
Maj. Lerner currently serves as the spokesperson for the Central Command. Since 2002 Maj. Lerner has held a variety of positions in both the IDF and the Civil Administration. He has served as a senior field liaison officer for coordinating and facilitating international humanitarian aid operations and economic development programs in the Palestinian territories. He was also formerly the spokesman for the Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Maj. Lerner’s posts will be uploaded with a delay of 24 hours for security reasons.