A hospital in Haifa has reported a surge in the number of requests for sperm donations from members of the Israeli Defence Forces.
A spirit of patriotism in Israel and a desire for noble progeny has prompted women to seek special donations from IDF OperationProtective Edge combat soldiers.
Haifa's Rambam Medical Centre has said that of 60 women who approach the sperm bank seeking donors each month, almost half have requested a donor with a history of combat service.
Operation Protective Edge has inspired more women to opt fordonations from men in military service, in the hope that their future offspring will display the same character traits as the combat soldiers.
Now, as well as choosing the hair and eye colour, height and educational background, the combat criteria has become a priority.
“These women build a profile of what they feel is the ideal donor and the father of their future child. It touches on the donors' character, and military service seems to indicate something about a person.”
- Dina Aminpour, head of the Haifa hospital sperm bank
"These women build a profile of what they feel is the ideal donor and the father of their future child," said Dina Aminpour, head of the hospital's sperm bank.
"It seems that the (Gaza) military operation and the stories the Israeli public were exposed to recently (about the IDF) have helped clarify some things for those requesting donations," she explained.
"It touches on the donors' character, and military service seems to indicate something about a person.
"A man who serves in the army in a combat role is usually assumed to have impressive constitution, which confirms the genetic aspirations of the women. They believe he will be fit, healthy, and have several other important attributes."
The increased demand for specialized sperm follows a significant decrease in the sperm quality of men in Israel and the world, meaning there are less and less potential donors which can actualize the donation.
The problem with the sperm quality has led to a large shortage indonations and the need to recruit more and more men to donate.
Prof. Shachar Kol, who runs the artificial insemination clinic at Rambam, said: "On average, only 10 percent of potential donors are accepted."