Israel’s conscription law assaults its own Ultra-Orthodox community

Ultra-Orthodox Jews take part in a protest against Israeli army conscription in Jerusalem, Mar 28, 2017. (photo: Oded Balilty / AP)
The Haredi community’s stance against military conscription is anchored in faith and principle that no power has been able to defeat.

By Miko Peled | Mint Press News | Dec 28, 2018

As much as the Zionist state and its various agencies want to believe that Israel is the state of the Jewish people, there is one Jewish community that will never accept this — it is the one community that is the most devout, the Haredi community.

“Nazis, Nazis,” that’s what I thought I heard. I was driving down the main road near Jerusalem’s Ultra-orthodox Me’a Sha’arim neighborhood where hundreds of young Haredi Jews were blocking the road. Dumpsters were burning and the traffic came to a halt. I jumped out of the car and ran to see what was happening. I asked a young Yeshiva student what was going on and if they were really shouting “Nazis.” He confirmed to me that they were calling the Israeli riot police Nazis and that this protest was because the police had just arrested several Haredi girls for refusal to serve in the Israeli army.

Nazis? I asked him, really? He then went on to describe the abuse and violence with which the police treat the young men and women in this community, particularly since Israel’s draft law had changed, making them all potential deserters.

It may be impossible to imagine a deeper divide than the one separating the two sides of this issue. Like a tiger that was allowed to remain in quiet slumber for some sixty-five years and has been abruptly awakened, Israel now has another angry, uncompromising community on its hands. And for no other reason than opportunistic politicians who saw in this divide a way to make a name for themselves.

On one side, a fearless community which knows no physical boundaries and is bound by its absolute faith in the Almighty and in the Torah. On the other, the full might of the state of Israel that is determined to undo the Haredi community and turn them into regular Israelis. . . . It is quite clear that from early on that this community has an army of their own and have no intention of raising a white flag.

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