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April 17, 2014 / 17 Nisan, 5774
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35 Thousand Haredim Protest Draft, 10 Cops Injured

The demonstrators rallied "against the evil decree of conscription."
Police clashed with Haredi demonstrated in Jerusalem, May 16, 2013.

Police clashed with Haredi demonstrated in Jerusalem, May 16, 2013.
Photo Credit: Flash90

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Ten police officers were injured, one seriously, six required medical care in hospital, at a Thursday night demonstration of an estimated 35 thousand Haredim (police estimated the crowd at 25 thousand, the higher estimate comes from Channel 10 News), in front of the recruiting office in Jerusalem. Three demonstrators were also injured and were taken to hospital. Eight Haredi demonstrators were arrested for questioning.

 

Thousands of Haredim protested in front of the IDF recruiting office in Jerusalem, May 16, 2013.

Thousands of Haredim protested in front of the IDF recruiting office in Jerusalem, May 16, 2013. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

The demonstrators rallied “against the evil decree of conscription,” following publication of the proceedings of Minister Yaakov Perry’s “Equal Burden” Committee. Driven mostly by the more radical members of the Haredi community—while the established Haredi parties and political institutions did not urge their supporters to join, and some, including Rav Ovadia Yosef, discouraged participation—demonstrators threw stones and water bottles at the crowd control police, pushed garbage collection carts at them and set fire to garbage containers.

Jerusalem Police Chief Yossi Parienti said the protest organizers failed to meet the terms of their license and the police will investigate them.

Giant ads posted in Haredi neighborhoods called for a “rally of tens of thousands” against “the Zionist regime in the Holy Land,” which is engaged in a culture war against the Haredi population.

“Remember, your fate and the fate of your descendants is in your hands,” said the rally ads issued by Haredi community leaders, arguing that only participation by tens of thousands in the protest would save the public from the scourge of the draft.

The head judge of the Eda Haredit (Haredi Community) court, Rabbi Tuvia Weiss, told the protesters that the Haredi Community opposes any compromise on the draft. Finance Minister Yair Lapid said that his party will fulfill its promise to voters on the equal burden. He wrote on his Facebook page that serving in the IDF is not an “evil decree.”

The office of Minister Yaakov Perry response to the rally was that the emerging new bill regarding the draft is part of a much needed reform necessitated by the reality in Israel and the current state of sharing the national burden, alongside the preservation of the value of Torah study. According to the committee, the recommended path for Haredi society begins with military service and continues into civilian employment.

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About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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13 Responses to “35 Thousand Haredim Protest Draft, 10 Cops Injured”

  1. Why do you want people in the Army that will not do what they are told . That becomes a danger to the army instead cut the pay of the draft dodgers in half .

  2. Cut all benefits and voting rights to those who refuse to serve.

  3. As i understand it the hareidim would theoretically work, however there is no mechanism in place which would allow for them to labor without having to serve first either in the army or other essentual services if the goverment really wants there to be equality of service (and more tax income) , they should allow the hareidi to work without having to serve first and ALL hareidi rabbis would allow such a bill

  4. Only the Levites were claimed by God the privilege to minister for Him. The Levites don’t work in the military, nor in secular jobs, but God is their inheritance through the tithes of the 11 tribes.

  5. Myriam Obadia says:

    Since they are such good fighters (against the police), they should do their duty and defend Eretz and Am Israel (against its enemies).

  6. Lana Merle says:

    Unless they are all Levites, aren't they supposed to be ready for the army from age 20 and up?

  7. These draft dodgers should be told.
    Unless you are prepared to serve your country, like every other young and older Jew, then there will be no money for you.
    The government will not give one cent to your health care, studies, or food.

    you have to earn this, just like every other Jew/Israeli.
    You must not expect the other Jews to protect you.

    You are cowards, who are quite happy to see others hurt of killed, in the defense of the jewish state and you.

    Do not expect help if you are attecked by Islamic terrorists.

    Do they live in Israel? If they don't like this, then move out.

  8. If they won't serve in the IDF, and won't work either cut them off of state aid our deport them.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Kathleen,

    You don't want them to say the same about the secular Jews? Let them fulfill the commands of G-d or deport them. The commands of G-d are more important than secular laws yet they don't say to kick you out of the land. You must accept that they have a different value system and the only relevant question is WHAT DOES G-D SAY IS THE RIGHT THING? So let us look into the Torah and see what G-d says about this. Its not so obvious what the answer might be and there may be different opinions. Yet we need to look into the Source of G-d's will – the Torah and start our discussion there. Our own personal opinions tainted by non Torah gentile concepts are irrelevant.

  10. Ans what about Holocaust,dis you forgeti t?.

  11. Ans what about Holocaust,dis you forgeti t?.

  12. Norka Mejia says:

    long life to Israel gustele a quien no le guste que viva Israel!

  13. Larry Cyment says:

    It is disgraceful to protest with violence. If you are capable of throwing stones you are capable of defending Israel by serving equally in military service.

    Wha makes the Haredim so special to be exempt from service. If throughout history Jews did not take up arms our ancestral line would have ended thousands of years ago. Shame.

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