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In Manhattan, Panelists Try To Narrow The Israeli Cultural Divide

(L-R) Ethan Bronner, Rabbi Avi Shafran and Ilan Geal-Dor

(L-R) Ethan Bronner, Rabbi Avi Shafran and Ilan Geal-Dor

Rabbi Shafran countered that radical ideological changes among haredim, and their sudden enlistment in the army, can worsen the conflict. Bronner, agreeing with Rabbi Shafran, said, “I think it’s highly unlikely that ultra-Orthodox Jews will serve in the army. Their leaders don’t want them to. They’re very afraid of assimilation with secular Jews.”

The evening conjured mixed reactions. Some audience members enjoyed the conversation’s mellow nature, while others had hoped for less thinking-out-loud and more concrete answers to the conflict.

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