Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.
If it weren’t so sad, the draft brouhaha in Israel would be the greatest show in town. It is a masquerade ball, a tragicomedy whereby each actor says the complete opposite of what he really wants.
The main actor, the IDF, is practically invisible. He doesn’t dare speak the truth, which is uncomfortable to many. The IDF really does not want the haredim in its ranks. As it is, the army has too much manpower. The last thing it needs is to deal with tens of thousands of new recruits with special dietary (and other) requirements – for which the army is unprepared. Both the Ben Basat Committee and the Shefer Committee have already studied the issue and recommended reducing conscription. But telling the truth to the feminists demanding to draft women into combat units and to the “pushovers” demanding a full-scale draft for the haredim would force the IDF top brass to exercise a rare character trait: acting courageously on public issues.
The second actor in our tragicomedy is the bearer of the torch of hatred for the haredim. This actor and his like-minded supporters were never great fans of army service. The last thing Yair Lapid wants is for the religious Zionist dominance in combat units to be matched by haredi dominance in the computer units of the Air Force and Navy. The outburst of patriotism that suddenly exploded onto the scene reflects political expedience and has nothing to do with ethics, or social or national values.
The third and fourth actors, the Kadima and Likud parties, are dragged into the show for similar reasons. The supporting cast: the media and the New Israel Fund and its plethora of organizations have kindled the cyclical bonfire of haredi hatred in the Israeli forest. Now they are all dancing around the flames. Who has time to deal with minor issues like Syria or Iran?
The only actors who truly want the haredim to enlist are the majority of haredi young men. They, like most people, are not capable of learning throughout the day and night. They would prefer to enter the workforce, but their establishment and Israel’s establishment do not allow them to do so. So in our theater of the absurd, the haredim wear the mask of those who do not want to enlist.
At the commencement ceremony recently held for the accounting graduates at the Kiryat Ono College, department head Yaron Zelicha addressed the many haredim who had successfully completed their degrees. He told them that they had not only scored better than the accounting graduates in other colleges, but that their grades were even higher than those of their secular counterparts.
The real challenge facing Israel is not integrating the haredim into the army, but rather integrating them into the workforce. Europe is not collapsing because of a lack of soldiers, but because in the face of increasing longevity, the productive sector of their society is shrinking.
Most of the nurseries and kindergartens being opened in Israel are for haredim. It is not the draft quotient in two decades that ought to concern us, but the integration into the workforce that should. If Israel continues to make it difficult for haredim who did not serve in the army to work, it is actually cutting off the branch on which it sits. Scientific investigation shows that a haredi child living in poverty today is the best investment for those aiming their arrows at him. That child will be feeding them when they are older.
The government can encourage the haredim to enter the workforce by taking the following steps:
1. Cut the connection between army service and integration into the workforce. When we prohibit Israeli citizens from working, what we are really doing is preventing them from paying taxes. The sanctions preventing the haredim from working are much more punishing to the state than to the citizen.
2. Copy and expand to other campuses the successful example of Yaron Zelicha at the Kiryat Ono College. The induction of haredim into academic learning and prodding them toward professions that Israel needs – particularly professions in which the haredim’s Talmudic backgrounds give them an advantage – is not only possible but also a sure way to success.
3. Create more academic courses for haredim, and support preferred funding for those institutions that integrate them. This will also encourage the various colleges to compete for the haredi student.
4. Provide tax breaks for employers who integrate haredim into their workforce.
5. Begin a public relations campaign encouraging employers to hire haredim, much as is being done now to encourage employers to hire Arabs.
If we ignore all the political hype, the solution is clear and simple.
About the Author: Moshe Feiglin is the Deputy Speaker of the Knesset and a member of Israel's Security and Defense Committee. He heads the Manhigut Yehudit ("Jewish Leadership") faction of Israel's governing Likud party. He is the founder of Manhigut Yehudit and Zo Artzeinu and the author of two books: "Where There Are No Men" and "War of Dreams." Feiglin served in the IDF as an officer in Combat Engineering and is a veteran of the Lebanon War. He lives in Ginot Shomron with his family.
If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.
Comments are closed.
Why has his death been treated by some as an invitation for an emotional “autopsy”?
SWOT analysis: Assessing resources, internal Strengths&Weaknesses; external Opportunities&Threats.
Strategy? For the longest time Obama couldn’t be bothered to have one against a sworn enemy.
We started The Jewish Press. Arnie was an integral part of the paper.
Fear alone is substantial; without fusing it to beauty, fear doesn’t reach its highest potential.
Fortunate are we to have Rosh Hashanah for repentance, a shofar to awaken heavenly mercy.
Arab leaders who want the US to stop Islamic State are afraid of being dubbed traitors and US agents
National Lawyers Guild:Sworn enemy of Israel & the legal arm of Palestinian terrorism since the ’70s
A little less than 10 percent of eligible Democratic voters came out on primary day, which translates into Mr. Cuomo having received the support of 6.2 percent of registered Democrats.
The reality, though, is that the Israeli “war crimes” scenario will likely be played out among highly partisan UN agencies, NGOs, and perhaps even the International Criminal Court.
Peace or the lack of it between Israel and the Palestinians matters not one whit when it comes to the long-term agenda of ISIS and other Islamists, nor does it affect any of the long-running inter-Arab conflicts and wars.
Rather than serving as a deterrent against terrorist attacks, Israel’s military strength and capabilities are instead looked at as an unfair advantage in the asymmetrical war in which it finds itself.
We did not win the war in Gaza because we are still captive to the concept of the 2 state solution.
Israel is our land, not theirs – Gaza included. No talk of the 2state solution; 1 state for 1 people
If this is how we play the game, we will lose. By that I mean we will lose everything.
We take US “aid” for psychological reasons-if we have an allowance, that means we have a father.
All the tactical problems have solutions. The real problem is not with the enemy; it is with us.
Why couldn’t the artillery barrage have been implemented before the soldiers went into that hell?
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/moshe-feiglin/the-draft-tragicomedy/2012/08/15/
Scan this QR code to visit this page online: