The "Israeli Lean"

slicing-the-pie” methods. One which is not often used in the United States is the Israeli Lean.

The Israeli Lean: Description
The basic way to execute the Israeli Lean is to assume the Point Shoot stance and then simply lean sideways so the upper diagonal portion of the body is now leaning past the cover. Note that the portion of the body exposed at this point is still minimal. Only the head and a diagonal line from one shoulder to the waist on the other side are visible. For the most part, vital organs will still be behind cover during the execution of the Israeli Lean.

At the moment of leaning the shooter should stand a few feet away from the wall to assure the wall does not interfere with the extended arm position, or the point-shoot principles.

Advantages of the Israeli Lean
Many state that the overly exposed body posture, compared to any of the other of the  three methods of negotiating corners/cover mentioned above, is a major flaw and therefore the Israeli Lean should be avoided. The truth is that no other method provides a more significant cover. In comparison, when executing the “slicing-the-pie” technique, the body is fully exposed  at the point of engagement, that is, when the target is visible, owing to the nature of the technique. The other two techniques, the sneak peak and the mirror use, allow the operator to remain mostly covered while gathering the necessary intelligence, but do not allow for quick target engagement. Most operators today shy away from the sneak peak: while it allows for intelligence gathering in a fairly safe manner, it also provides the enemy with the knowledge of your whereabouts and intentions.

The starting position of the Israeli-Lean is actually a combat shooting position, the Point-Shoot position, which is maintained throughout the lean. This means that the ability to engage and eliminate threats upon recognition is a major advantage not present in the other methods. Maintaining a point-shoot stance throughout the execution of the lean is imperative. So is allowing the muzzle to trace your vision, so the weapon is pointing at whatever it is you are looking at, to allow for the fastest and most accurate target engagement in a close quarter environment.

(Note the cover the shooter maintains while still being capable of engaging targets. Note the distance from the wall, allowing to maintain the point-shoot stance with arms extended throughout the lean)

Applications of the Israeli Lean vary greatly. The benefit for most military units is that it facilitates engagement in an urban combat zone. Typical scenarios that involve using the Israeli Lean may include house clearing, insurgents chase into a residential housing unit, weapon cache searches, and other similar missions. Most law-enforcement agencies I have worked with tend to apply this technique to Active-Shooters scenarios in which quick recognition of the target and engagement is imperative.

Tzviel (BK) Blankchtein, a defensive tactics instructor, is founder and president of Masada Tactical, and may be contacted through the company’s Web site. Readers may send him questions on topics and issues which are of interest to them. He will post some of these questions, and his answers to them, in the column.