Israel Draft (Part2)
The largest political party in the Kismet, Kadima, has left the governing coalition over the draft issue.
The current leader of Kadima, Shaul Mofaz, former Israel Defense Forces chief of staff, who feels very strongly about ending the Haredi exemption, said that the Prime Minister’s decision not to end the exemption for Haredi was unacceptable.
The popular attitude toward the issue is complex and intense. Many Israelis dislike the Haredi (Orthodox Jews). Many dislike the “civilian service” alternative that most of the Haredi would take as opposed to military service. Meanwhile, the IDF Rabbinate has become more and more Orthodox and strident, Some rabbis are even telling soldiers what orders they can disobey, they shouldn’t have female instructors, and can disobey female NCOs and officers.
A number of Jews don’t want the Haredi in the IDF at all, because of all their special requirements, disruptiveness, the idea of giving them (more) guns, etc. Finally, a lot of people see the “Draft Haredi” issue as a diversion from the problems of growing income inequality, control of the economy by a couple dozen families, the West Bank, etc.
The “Share the Burden” argument is occasionally made, but is less important than the larger issue of the Haredi state-within-a-state and their oft-proclaimed intention of turning Israel into a theocracy with them in charge.
This is not about conscientious objection to war, or about “sharing the burden.” It’s about the Haredi “state within a state” and how far Israel, an ostensibly secular country, will give in to those who want to take it over and institute a theocracy.
Many say that the issue was never the draft per se — militarily, the Haredim are far more trouble than they’re worth, as proven by the “Nahal” battalion that was set up on an experimental basis to see if you could have a Haredi work/military unit modeled after the old “Pioneer” outfits. Total failure.