web analytics
August 27, 2014 / 1 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



Thousands of Haredim Protest IDF Draft in Lower Manhattan

To passersby on Sunday, the crowd had a simple message, one that rings sympathetically to American ears.
By:
Thousands of Haredim protest in Lower Manhattan, June 9, 2013

Thousands of Haredim protest in Lower Manhattan, June 9, 2013
Photo Credit: JTA

Until now, the primary storyline of the religious-secular battles in Israel has been driven by Women of the Wall, the activist group that, with their monthly prayer meetings at Jerusalem’s Western Wall, have brought more attention to the quest for religious equality in Israel than has been seen in years.

But with the massive haredi protest at the Wall last month, and today’s large showing in Lower Manhattan, the haredim have begun to mobilize.

The immediate issue which brought thousands to Foley Square Sunday is the attempt to conscript haredi Orthodox Israelis into the army. A parliamentary committee advanced a bill last month that would do just that. But the banner under which the protestors gathered in Foley Square on Sunday surprised me a little, as it’s one that has been largely the domain of religious liberals: freedom of religion.

As one sign carrier told me today, his religion requires him to sit and study Torah. Any attempt to draft those like him into the military would be a violation of his religious rights.

It has generally been the liberals who have taken this line (in several cases, to the Israeli Supreme Court), arguing that Orthodox law should not be the law of the land, and that Reform and Conservative Jews also have rights, in particular at the Western Wall. The effort has borne fruit, leading to a court ruling in favor of women’s prayer at the Wall and an announcement by  the Religious Services Ministry that it would institute changes to allow for the funding of non-Orthodox rabbis. The support that such efforts have drawn from the ranks of American Jews shows that the quest for religious equality is a resonant one.

Which may be precisely why the haredim are trying to co-opt it. To passersby on Sunday, the crowd had a simple message, one that rings sympathetically to American ears. It’s a savvy move, and one with the added benefit of obscuring the anti-Zionism that is at the heart of the protest. Sings promoting the gathering spoke of the “evil” Israeli authorities, leading the Rabbinical Council of America, a centrist Orthodox group, to condemn the “anti-Israel rally” before it had even begun, saying attendees were aiding the enemies of the Jewish people. But it was the protestors who believed themselves to be on God’s side. One speaker portrayed the conscription effort as only the latest in a series of failed attempts throughout history to destroy Judaism.

Sunday’s gathering was promoted with banners in strongholds of the Satmar hasidic community. According to a Forward report last week, the protest was deemed so important it brought about a rare rapprochement between the group’s two warring  factions, which split after the 2006 death of the Satmar rebbe, Moshe Teitelbaum. Organizers said they expected 20,000 people. One guy with a placard told me there were 100,000 there, which was certainly not the case. But they came by the busload. Hours after the event began, groups of hasidic men in Brooklyn were still streaming toward Manhattan.

 

About the Author:


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.

5 Responses to “Thousands of Haredim Protest IDF Draft in Lower Manhattan”

  1. Ahron Ebert says:

    I guess Yoshua was wrong to raise an army. Dovid the aurthor or Tahillim was wrong to fight the Palistime.They should stop saying Tahillim. Shimshon HaGibur should not have fought the Palisthime but been sitting and learnig.

  2. Ira Lee says:

    Any nation proclaiming abrahamic lineage should disband their army.

  3. Yehoshua was a navi (prophet). In order to start a new Commonwealth, which includes an army, a prophet is required. Otherwise, the blood of our holy brothers and sisters who have died in all of the wars since 1948 is on our own heads, without any heter.

  4. There are no Satmarers protesting WOW, because Satmar does not go to the Wall. Since Satmar does not believe in a Jewish State, they would not waste their time trying to impose Judaism on others through political means, as opposed to the Religious Zionist/Modern Orthodox segments, who seek to force their religious views on others.

  5. It's about time the Haredi helped carry the burden of protecting and defending the State. As a group, with exceptions of course, they have benefitted without shouldering the burden in the same way other Israeli citizens have had to sacrifice.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Strike on Golan Yekev
Israeli Wounded from Syrian Shelling on Golan
Latest News Stories
Engineering Corp soldier looking down a Palestinian-dug tunnel.

Hamas recently indicated to international press that it would continue building up its underground network while restocking arsenal, rockets and other weaponry

Teh Iranian weapons ship Klos C

Iran vowed on Monday to “accelerate” its rearming of PA Arabs in Judea and Samaria, one day after it claimed that it shot down an Israeli spy drone over its airspace.

Fears for the life of New Jersey yeshiva student Aaron Sofer, studying in Israel, grow with each passing day since his disappearance on Friday.

The case of missing U.S. yeshiva student Aaron Sofer, studying in Israel, remains unsolved after six days.

“We are strong chassidic women and we take the name, we embrace it, and we own it.”

After a month, should the quiet hold, Israel and Hamas will restart indirect negotiations in Cairo on easing Israel’s blockade of the coastal strip and disarming the enclave.

Israel’s political landscape awoke Wednesday to the latest ceasefire with a sharp round of criticism for Prime Minister Netanyahu, and jostling for position amongst senior politicians who have begun to smell the aroma of early elections, possibly in the first half of 2015.

Palestinian terrorists threw stones at Jewish-owned cars in the Wadi Joz section of Jerusalem Wednesday. Three children were injured and treated on the spot. A 22-year-old man was arrested, and police told Israel Radio the man has confessed to other incidents as well. In Shuafat, in northern Jerusalem, Palestinians threw rocks at the Jerusalem light […]

Nearly 90 percent of Gaza residents support attacks on Israel, say rockets help ‘deterrence’

Chaim Yellin: We don’t want government support. We need quiet in the morning.

Mortar fire crossed the border into northern Israel from Syria near Quneitra. Two cars were damaged. Accidental shelling?

NYC lawmaker Laurie Cumbo presses Miami-Dade officials to find Rabbi Joseph Raksin’s murderer.

Former US Middle East envoy Martin Indyk warns Israel’s self-defense in Gaza has increased tensions with Washington – again.

A baby was hurt when Palestinian terrorists stoned the car she was driving in near the Samaria community of Yitzhar this morning. According to reports on the Hebrew-language 0404 website, the driver of the vehicle escaped the scene of the attack and reached a nearby IDF base safely. There, the baby was treated for her […]

The Zara clothing firm fell ‘fashion flat’ with a toddler tee allegedly a “sheriff’s shirt” in Israel – bearing a yellow, 6-pointed star.

The majority of the reactions are against the truce, and all voiced skepticism about its viability.

More Articles from JTA

Nearly 200 Hollywood elite, including Sylvester Stallone and Seth Rogen, signed a statement condemning Hamas as its conflict with Israel continues.

Police entered the apartment after relatives were unable to contact the couple.

If you are worried about your child marrying a non-Jew, and you should be, then move to Israel.

If “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” Diaspora Jews are in big trouble.

Al Qaeda wants the US to free terrorists in return for freeing Warren Weinstein.

At least six Haredi protesters were arrested and a police officer was wounded in demonstrations in at least three Israeli cities Sunday following the arrest of a yeshiva student for ignoring a draft notice. Hundreds of protesters blocked busy intersections in Jerusalem, Bnei Brak, Modiin Illit and Beit Shemesh. The yeshiva student has been arrested […]

Police in Melbourne arrested seven pro-Palestinian protesters who stormed the roof of an Israel-based company.

Violent assaults on Jews are becoming more common around the world.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/thousands-of-haredim-protest-idf-draft-in-lower-manhattan/2013/06/10/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: