Photo Credit: Flash 90
Riot police patrol Mea Shearim Tuesday after a mob of radical Haredim attacked a Haredi soldier

Jerusalem police Tuesday rescued a uniformed Haredi soldier from a mob of more than 100  rock-throwing Haredi attackers in Jerusalem’s Mea Shearim neighborhood, where four people were arrested.

Haredi soldiers have increasingly been attacked by other Haredim – those who are anti-Zionist – but the ferocity of Tuesday’s ambush was unprecedented and drew wall-to-wall condemnation from Israeli politicians.

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Of course, there were exceptions to the outrage. Haredi Knesset Members were silent, except for Shas.

A coalition of government ministers from the Likud, Jewish Home, Yesh Atid and other parties expressed disgust at the assault on the Haredi soldier, who hid into a nearby building to escape the assault. Riot police, also under attack by rock throwers, took him out of danger. The soldier, who is from metropolitan Tel Aviv and was visiting a relative, was not injured.

“Any attempt to physically or spiritually harm soldiers should be dealt with harsh penalties by the State,” said Yesh Atid Minister Yaakov Peri, chairman of the  Knesset Committee for Promoting Equal Share of the Burden Chairman. He urged Haredi community leaders “to take responsibility before a disaster occurs,” and called the incident an “attempted lynch.”

Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid, who campaigned in the last election on a platform of eliminating deferment to Haredim, called the attack “appalling.”

A new bill to eliminate Haredi deferments was overwhelming approved by a ministerial committee Sunday and is to be voted on by the Knesset.

Three rabbis of the Nahal Haredi army unit also condemned the attack, which they said was an “embarrassment and a disgrace” to the Haredi community in Mea Shearim.

Aryeh Deri, leader of the Shas party went so far as to say that the attack by “extremist and delinquent youth” violates Torah sages’ teaching that a Jew who harms another Jew is “evil.”

The attack was reported overseas and given headline coverage by Fox News, giving Israel a royal black eye.

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Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.

17 COMMENTS

  1. What they did was wrong, but let’s not forget the victim was Heredi as well.

    In my opinion, the hatred being ginned up against them, and the internal fighting however is worse.

    Let’s not forget that they are our brothers.

    ENJOY THE 9 DAYS ACHIM!

  2. This story doesn't add up:
    1st it says:
    "a mob of more than 100 rock-throwing Haredi attackers", "attack Haredi soldiers".
    Then it says:
    "The soldier, who is from metropolitan Tel Aviv and was visiting a relative, was not injured."
    I see 3 problems with the story right there.

  3. extremists are blind to anything other than their own beliefs. Those haredim who did this – the anti-Zionists – are hypocrites. They condemn the state of Israel, but live there and take everything from it. Why does the state keep giving them benefits?

  4. How tragic, don’t you agree? As if it isn’t bad enough already that detractors don’t agree with the existence of Jews, Judaism, the building of a Third Temple, or the State of Israel, we have to turn around and show them why they may be right, right? Disgraceful, don’t you agree? A real showing of a lack of true foresight and grace, no? Disgraceful.

  5. I agree with aryeh deri! these guys are an embarrassment to us charedim. they ressemble more the muslim extremists than what we represent…… Gd have mercy! where is this world heading!
    LIVE! AND LET LIVE!

  6. All those of us whom felt sadness for the snowball attack on those two Haredi boys, by a gang of Arab youths in east Jerusalem, might now have a second thought. Obviously the Haredim learned nothing from this lesson and even took it a step lower by attacking one of their own kind whose job is actually to protect his people.

  7. All those of us whom felt sadness for the snowball attack on those two Haredi boys, by a gang of Arab youths in east Jerusalem, might now have a second thought. Obviously the Haredim learned nothing from this lesson and even took it a step lower by attacking one of their own kind whose job is actually to protect his people.

  8. From Arabs who "celebrate death the way the Jews celebrate life" I expect this sort of cowardly and animalistic mindless violence. HaShem should paralyze the arm that would lift a stone against another Jew in this chillul HaShem. Especially a Jew that puts on the uniform to protect his fellow Jew.

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