At the time of his capture, Gilad Shalit was a 19-year-old corporal in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), working as a tank gunner along the Israel-Gaza border. During his imprisonment, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant.
Sgt. Shalit holds dual citizenship with Israel and France. He was born and raised in northern Israel and joined the IDF in 2005 after completing high school – the norm in Israel, where military service is compulsory for men and women.