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Jun 18, 2012

Haredim and Women In The IDF

Yesterday, a group of high level female officers in the IDF, as well as other high ranking women from elsewhere (police, Mossad, etc), sent a letter to the prime minister, the defense minister, and others, regarding the movement to find a solution to drafting the haredim.

The letter was a warnign of sorts that in the drive to draft the haredim, care should be taken to not do it in a way that would harm the standing of women in the army. In recent times we have seen many cases in which the integration of religious people into the army (and I point out that almost all those cases were dati leumi soldiers) led to harming the status of women - demanding separation, walking out during poerformances of female soldiers, etc.

As long as the numbers of haredim being drafted stays relatively small - enough to keep in separate units such as Nahal Haredi, I don't see this as much of a problem. The problem will begin when the numbers grow, because of a mandatory draft with no more mass-deferments, and they can no longer be contained within a few separate units, but need to mix into the general army units.

I don't see how drafting the haredim in huge numbers won't end up being a problem with the standing of the women in the army. I just don't see it.

The army will need to find a creative solution. Either that or decide which is more important - the drafting of haredim en masse or the equal standing of women in the army. Without an extremely creative solution, I don't see how both can happen simultaneously.

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  1. Not every position in the army requires regulation. And especially as cyber warfare becomes a more important field in the military one can easily see the Chareidim being shunted from front line positions to desk jobs to avoid conflicts.

  2. One thing I am confident about is that when/if conflicts do come up, the Charedim will no doubt be blamed.

  3. Why not make military service mandatory for men but not for women? That way it would be easier to mix units (as they would be mostly male) and avoid conflict with the Haredim (who probably prefer not to have their daughters shot at).

    This won't eliminate conflict completely, but it would help reduce it somewhat. Maybe. :-/

  4. ah.. mandatory military service for women is a 60 year old fight and I am sure the government has no interest in going back to that. As well, today the women in the general population want it, as it is a sign of their equal standing in society.

  5. In a related story, the government are now tossing around a plan whereby 80% of yeshiva students would be drafted either to the IDF or national service, with 20% getting full exemptions. My fear is the huge chillul Hashem that will follow with exemptions only being available via "protekzia" with many fine, serious boys being drafted while certain bochurim with the "correct" family names will be gloating. Alternatively, even if the exemptions are based on an examination, who is to say who is the "Gadol of the future"? Is it the kid who slides through life on 100% in exams, or his neighbor who puts his entire being into getting a 75%? Either way, I see a huge potential for a total destruction of any form of "ahavas Yisrael" in the near future.

  6. You are living in a dreamworld if you think that haredim will ever join mixed uints. They would rather spend 3 years in prison. While the mandatory draft will happen, and while eventually they will get used to the idea of joining the army, they will demand that it is only to separate haredi units and would never consider joining mixed units. These are people who won't even get on a mixed bus, never mind a mixed base - oh the pritzus!!

  7. Shalom,

    so what we have now is ahavat yisrael? Where a huge segment of the population has to worry about their kids being maimed or killed and other segments of society get special treatment... and this is ahavat yisrael why? because charediim like this way? doesn't ahavat yisrael include the feelings of all israel and not just how the charediim feel about a situation?


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