web analytics
September 23, 2014 / 28 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Shas HaShmad or Kiddush HaShem?

nachal haredi

Photo Credit: Miriam Alster/FLASH90

If this is Shas HaShmad (forced conversion out of Judaism), then I’ll take it. It’s stories like this that give lie to the charge that a Charedi draft is anti Charedi. From Matzav:

170 soldiers of the Netzach Yehuda Battalion were sworn in on Thursday. Hundreds of family members from Yerushalayim went to show support for the soldiers at the swearing-in ceremony.

How well do Charedim do in the army? How well do they adjust? How many have joined? Read on.

A military report concerning a commander’s course in which 11 of the 95 participants were from the Nachal Charedi stated: “From the outset of the course, the soldiers of the Nachal Charedi made a positive impression, performing as high caliber infantrymen, showing serious participation in coursework, and conducting themselves in a serious manner. They got along well with the rest of the soldiers in the group, and adjusted well socially with the general public at the base. They conducted themselves according to halachah and gave reinforcement to other observant soldiers in the larger group of participants.”

Over the past year, a sharp rise was recorded in the number of the brigade’s enlisting soldiers. 286 soldiers enlisted to the unit in November, a 70% increase compared to the previous November. In annual totals, 754 soldiers enlisted for the battalion, a 50% rise from 2012. Nachal Chareidi has won several prizes in recent months. It won the IDF Department of Technology and Logistics’ Award in November, and a month later made IDF history by winning the Chief of Staff’s Prize for the first time.

So much for Shmad. Of course the right refuses to leave this alone. In the very same article:

Rabbi Yitzchak Bar-Chaim of the Nachal Chareidi Foundation, who accompanied the soldiers throughout their training, said: “These two contradicting events, the protests and the swearing-in ceremony, emphasize what we and the IDF command have been saying for a year: if the draft of the Ultra-Orthodox becomes a religious war no charedi will enlist, and there will be protests. If there is cooperation, dialogue, and a mutual construction of the suitable systems we will witness an enlistment on a large scale of Ultra-Orthodox youth who are not suitable to sit and learn, as we have seen today.”

Isn’t that the truth, though? Isn’t ‘cooperation, dialogue, and a mutual construction of a suitable system’ the better approach? Shouldn’t threats of ‘war’ against the goverment by draft resisting Charedim be discouraged rather than encouraged?

I do not in fact see all that much of a contradiction between what Israel seeks to do with respect to drafting Charedim and what Rabbi Bar-Chaim says. The goals seem to almost be the same. Getting them to be the same is what compromise is about, isn’t it? I have to believe that men of good faith on both sides of the aisle will be able to come up with some sort of compromise about who will serve and how many will be exempt. Those who serve will do so under conditions similar to those 170 Charedi soldiers that were sworn into the IDF last week.

There are some who say that Israel will never implement a Netzach Yehuda type program in any kind of a mass scale required for the vastly increased numbers of Charedi students being drafted. They claim is that the expense of doing so is too prohibitive.

My answer to that is if the government promises to do it, then we ought to hold them to that promise and not draft a single Charedi student that will not be given the opportunity to serve in that way. If the government does not keep its promise – that would be the time to protest.

Although Rabbi Yitzchak Bar-Chaim too is opposed to the draft, it is quite obvious from his statement that he does not consider army service Shas HaShmad. He obviously views these Charedi recruits with pride. This is how every single Charedi in Israel – including rabbinic leaders – should look at it.

But instead some of the more radical ones cry bloody murder at the mere mention of the draft. They threaten all kinds of terrible repercussions if Charedim are subjected to the ‘Shmad’ of army service! Isn’t it time for some sanity on this issue from that segment of the Charedi leadership that realizes this is not a Shas Shamd? Why are there no voices in opposition to the vicious screams of Shamd and the like that one hears all the time?

I agree with Religious Zionist rabbis on this issue. They encourage their students to serve. They consider it an obligation and even a Kiddush HaShem. Do Charedi rabbis consider that Religious Zionist rabbis are guilty of Shmad too?

The Charedi world is alone on this issue. The rest of Orthodoxy does not agree with them and they are perplexed by that. They say that Charedim have always fought for the rights of Religious Zionists. Why don’t they now reciprocate and fight for the rights of the Charedim?

Isn’t the answer obvious? They are in profound disagreement with them. Not to mention the fact that Religious Zionist students serve, fight, and die for their country while Charedi students instead sit and learn. And how many of them actually do that the way they are supposed to?

I think that every single Charedi leader ought to attend the next Charedi swearing in ceremony. And in the future, instead of yelling and screaming that forced army service is a Shas Shmad, they ought to be yelling and screaming at those who vilify Charedim that serve. That would be a pleasant change in the right direction.

Visit Emes Ve-Emunah .

About the Author: Harry Maryles runs the blog "Emes Ve-Emunah" which focuses on current events and issues that effect the Jewish world in general and Orthodoxy in particular. It discuses Hashkafa and news events of the day - from a Centrist perspctive and a philosphy of Torah U'Mada. He can be reached at hmaryles@yahoo.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

One Response to “Shas HaShmad or Kiddush HaShem?”

  1. A Y Margalios says:

    Today — Erev Shabbos — is Purim Kattan: “VeNahapoch Hu.”

    As the author earns his living from wedding videography, should his family name be changed to MarryMORE?

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
Current Top Story
Yamam Hebron Shootout
Israel SWAT Team Exchanging Fire with Hamas Kidnappers in Hebron [video]
Latest Blogs Stories
IDF Unetaneh Tokef

This video of IDF soldiers singing one of the most powerful prayers Jews say on the holiest day of the year is simply amazing!

Jordana

When I think back to one year ago it actually feels like a lifetime ago; I was truly another person.

eretz-israel-struck

To continue meriting the Promised Land, Jews must consider & always improve upon their own behavior.

Brit Milah

Though the Talmud doesn’t give instructions, Metzitza has always been done B’Peh – by oral suction.

ISIS and Hamas are cut from the same cloth. Obama should listen to Netanyahu.

Last night I attended the big festive celebration of ten years of Menachem Begin Heritage Center and Museum. Security was tight, almost like at a foreign airport, because both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and President Ruby Rivlin were to be there. And yes, they were and yes they spoke. Officially the evening was a tribute […]

Hamas’ tunnels were destroyed as were plans for their unparalleled terror attacks on Rosh Hashana.

Grandmaster Michael Adams talks about life as a professional chess player.

The Jewish Press stressed the possible ramifications of such a breach of Israeli political protocol

Why some countries are more economically successful than others? Tune in for the answer…

If not scared by God be scared by man; Hopefully ethics will integrate into lives for proper reasons

Smear campaigns by people with agendas other than justice do not faze him; He does what is right.

Countries like Turkey, Europe and even the US have proven fertile ground for recruiting terrorists

How many times have you heard anti-semites spew words like Israel are Nazis, or what you are doing to the Arabs is worse that what the Nazis did to the Jews?!…

My blog, Israpundit, was hacked, and I had to move to a new domain…

There’s much confusion about the definition of Daas Torah; simply put it means the wisdom of Torah.

More Articles from Harry Maryles
Brit Milah

Though the Talmud doesn’t give instructions, Metzitza has always been done B’Peh – by oral suction.

ethics

If not scared by God be scared by man; Hopefully ethics will integrate into lives for proper reasons

Smear campaigns by people with agendas other than justice do not faze him; He does what is right.

There’s much confusion about the definition of Daas Torah; simply put it means the wisdom of Torah.

Pashkevil: “Come out today and battle the Zionist Amalek and all the traitors in Nahal Haredi…”

Rabbi Fink: “There are many ‘true believers who can’t even be in the presence of Orthodox Judaism.”

“The Obama administration proved once again that it is the best friend of its enemies, and the biggest enemy of its friends.”

1st thing that must be done: tear down that wall; 2nd thing: allocate empty classrooms to Charedim.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/shas-hashmad-or-kiddush-hashem/2014/02/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: