Thursday, March 30, 2017

IDF threatens to punish soldiers who protest co-ed combat units

Arutz 7

The IDF is taking a surprisingly strident, and even threatening, tone against soldiers who, on their off-time, protest the army's increasing integration of women in combat units.

Hesder yeshiva soldiers have begun distributing literature explaining the dangers of mixed-gender combat units, and of women in combat roles altogether.

The Hesder soldiers are generally considered the army's best, and their campaign has taken off over just the past few days.
"In the face of all logic," the distributed pamphlets state, "and "ignoring expert opinions and research, the IDF is undergoing a transformation that harms its female soldiers, impairs its combat abilities, and detracts from the safety of all of us. It is not logical, it is not moral, it is not humane."
The name of the new campaign: "Saving the IDF."
The IDF, which has now set as one of its primary objectives the full integration of women throughout the military, responded harshly. The IDF Spokesman's Office even compared the new campaign with that of the extremist haredi group that says one must be killed rather than register for the draft: "The call to 'Save the IDF' is similar to the calls coming from the extremists in the haredi community that oppose enlistment in the IDF and the fulfillment of the laws of the country."

That is, the IDF Spokesman's Office compares the mass protests and campaign to oppose at all costs even registering with the IDF, on the one hand, to those who seek to warn, from within, against dangers in the IDF, and advocate a short delay, at most, in enlisting in the IDF.
The Spokesman's statement continues: "The IDF views with gravity, and condemns any attempt at any form of refusal. Calls for division with the IDF and insults to the honor of people must be opposed and uprooted. Everything must be done to continue to defend the State of Israel by all those who serve, from all sectors of Israeli society. Participation in this act is forbidden to IDF soldiers, and the subject will be intensively investigated and treated with severity."
The campaign against mixed combat units also cites the physiological differences between men and women, and the consequent differences in the way in which they are trained. While men must run with two canteens and five bullet cartridges in order to qualify as a combat soldier, females need run with only one canteen and two bullet cartridges to qualify for the same.
In addition, men must jump and climb over a wall, while women are permitted to stand on a bench in order to qualify for the wall-climbing test.

Former IDF Generals Yiftach Ron-Tal and Avigdor Kahalani are quoted in opposing the IDF's new gender-integration policies.


  1. The Rabbi here once explained the Dayeinu in the Hagada like this:

    The Jewish People are on an elevator. Everyone gets off at their stop. For some, learning Torah is the be-all and end-all, so for them, after receiving the Torah it is "Dayenu". And do on.

    But the true last stop is the building of the Bais Hamikdash.

    I'm reminded of this by the post.

    For some, women serving in the army is a deal killer for supporting the army, since it has been ruled that a woman should give up her life rather than serve in it (althoughthis does not apply to civilian activities that support the army).

    For some, the unofficially sanctioned off-duty interaction between men and women in the service is a deal killer since the camp must remain holy.

    For some, allowing avowed homosexual men to serve is a deal killer, since the camp must remain holy.

    For some, women in combat roles is a deal killer, because it endangers human life.

    Well, to the last group, I say "Sorry, Charlie". The army is not looking for soldiers with good taste, that have a good Ta'am, that is, that are logical and make sense. They want soldiers that taste good; that is, they want an army that appears to be socially progressive and gives everyone a feeling of being advanced.

    In essence, the battle has been moved from the battlefield to the consciousness-raising halls of academia. Their ivory tower argument is something like this: If those Arabs and Iranians would just do the same, put women into combat roles, it would level the playing field! We must fight for equality!!

    Makes no sense, but we are in a post-truth age, anyway.

  2. And democracy in Israel takes another blow...

  3. It might be helpful to mention the position on the formation of the State of Israel held by the Telzer Rav, Rav Elya Meir Bloch zt"l.

    It was given over to me by the Rabbi here, a Talmid of Rav Bloch.

    In my own words: Rav Bloch was against the formation of the State. Once the State of Israel was declared, however, he accepted it.

    His logic: it's comparable to a child conceived through a forbidden relationship. The relationship should be opposed. But once the Mamzer(es) is born, he or she is accepted as a full Jew.

    So, living under the government State of Israel can't be worse than any other State where Jews live.

    It occurs to me that Jews have been forcibly conscripted in a number of countries throughout history, and had to serve under trying circumstances.

  4. According to the Rambam, it is a duty to live in the land of israel. The existence of the state of israel seems to have made that "physically" easier.

  5. Ramban, surely?

  6. The State of Israel doesn't equal Eretz Yisroel any more than Ottoman and Mandate Palestine equaled Eretz Yisroel.

    The State encompasses land outside of Eretz Yisroel (i.e. Eilat) and land in Eretz Yisroel is outside the State (i.e. Southern Lebanon, Jordan.)

    And the Torah Jews who are most opposed to the State are those that live in Eretz Yisroel.

  7. But you can never forget that the mamzer is a mamzer.

  8. Cantonists were developed with the acquiescence of the rabbonim. Poor children, orphans, who had no one to look after them were "conscripted" by the community as a whole, with rabbinic blessings.

  9. You overlook that accepting $$$ from the Medinah is nevertheless admirable.

  10. The IDF draft on Yeshiva bochorim is developed with the acquiescence and/or support of daati leumi rabbonim.

  11. Brisk, Satmar and various other groups (Toldos Aharon, Eidah Chareidus, etc.) specifically forgo accepting Medinah funding that they are legally entitled to under State law.

  12. I agree with most of what you said on this point. But all that does not contradict my point that "according to the Rambam, it is a duty to live in the land of israel. The existence of the state of israel (the present sovereign authority over large swathes of the historical land of israel) seems to have made that "physically" easier."

    The more Jews who move to the territories of the state of israel, who are faithful to the letter AND spirit of the Torah, the more "Jewish" the state will be. That would seem to be the best way to protest the present non-jewish character of the state.

  13. IMHO, there is a false perception of a disagreement between the Rambam and Ramban on this issue. For example, Yemenite Jews who follow the Rambam, have always understood it to be a duty to live in the land of israel.

    The Rambam did not hold that you had to wait for the Messiah before esablishing self-government in the land of israel or even before going to war to conquer the land. However, there are clear halachic requirements for both, which do not exist today.

    But it is a duty for every Torah observant Jew, according to the Rambam, to move to the land of Israel at all times, regardless of the conditions. This can be seen from the following halacha on marriage (Ishut 13:30):

    "When a husband desires to move to Eretz Yisrael and [his wife] does not desire to do so, he may divorce her without paying her [the money due her by virtue of her] ketubah. If she desires to move [to Eretz Yisrael] and he does not desire to do so, he must divorce her and pay her [the money due her by virtue of her] ketubah.29

    The same laws apply with regard to moving from other places in Eretz Yisrael to Jerusalem. [Just as] everyone should move to Eretz Yisrael, and no one should leave there, [so too,] everyone should move to Jerusalem, and no one should leave there."

  14. Listen up Charlie. This unJewish state has resulted in more Jews living within the borders of Eretz yisroel than at any time since the bayis sheni. It provides funding for yeshivas on a larger scale than any single funder of yeshivas in history. It runs according to the schedule of the Jewish week ie Shabbos, and the Jewish luach, ie everyone gets chagim off.
    Its army exists in order to provide physical protection for all these Jews living in its borders.
    Is it perfect? No. Is it run entirely on Torah lines? nowhere near. But you know what, if you look at the negatives guess what you'll find. And the sheer chutzpa of carping from thousands of miles away about what's lacking over here is nothing short of pathetic.
    The 'state of these Zionists' is the vessel by which hashgacha has brought millions of Jews back home. Which is why R. Tzvi Pesach Frank said hallel on yom ha'atzemeut. And Rav Ovadya Yosef.
    Let me tell you a little story about what happens when you live with your attitude to Israel, my little middos- challenged acquaintance. We've had demonstrations outside our home here in E'Y recently due to a a neighbour engaged in governemnt giyus work. One of your delightful colleagues-in-attitude told my neighbours, whose son just joined a combat unit to help protect Jewish lives, that he wishes her children die. That, charlie, is where such anti-Torah attitudes as yours end up.
    If you want to comment then move here, contribute to the physical and spirtual development of the the Ribbono she olam's country and be positive about it. Failing that, at the very least keep your mouth shut.

  15. Living in Eretz Yisrael, including Yehudah and Shomron, as well as other areas is now possible for essentially every Jew in the world. Thus, according to Rambam's halachic statement that the difference between Ymei Mashich and Y'mei galus is only the shi'bud malchus, hence today nobody is prevented from returning to Eretz Israel. Not even the Russians.
    Also, the fact that the State does not apply Shulchan Aruch to every area of State law does not make it illegitimate. If the state does not officially practice Avodah Zarah, then it is de facto Kosher. This was the difference between the Kings who practiced idolatry, and those who did not. Separation of sexes in the army is something that can be addressed by the Neviim in giving moral instruction.
    today you can practice Torah, and not be forced to worship idols, in Israel.


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