Friday 29 March 2024 - 14:00

“Israel’s” Internal Rift: “High Court” Orders Halt to Funds for “Torah” Students Eligible for Draft

Story Code : 1125643
“Israel’s” Internal Rift: “High Court” Orders Halt to Funds for “Torah” Students Eligible for Draft
A government resolution from June 2023 instructing the “Israeli” army to temporarily not draft Haredi students despite the expiration of a “law” governing the matter will itself expire at midnight on March 31.

The court decision, which goes into effect April 1, comes after the government delayed for days the submission of a proposal to the “court” for plans to increase ultra-Orthodox military enlistment.

The political battle over enlistment has thrown the entity’s PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition into disarray, with the so-called “National Unity’s” Benny Gantz threatening to bolt if the Knesset passes a bill allowing blanket exemptions to remain – even if it does satisfy the court – while the Haredim have said they will quit if the government fails to pass “legislation” to prevent the draft.

Haredi parties lambasted the “High Court’s” decision, with the head of “United Torah Judaism”, “Housing and Construction” Minister Yitzhak Goldknopf, describing it as constituting “severe harm to those who toil in Torah” and “a stain and a disgrace.”

“Shas” party head Aryeh Deri said the decision constituted “unprecedented maltreatment for Torah study in the Jewish ‘state’.”

Most “Israeli” men are required to serve nearly three years followed by years of annual reserve duty. Many women serve two years. But the politically powerful Haredim, who make up roughly 13% of “Israeli” society, have traditionally received exemptions if they are studying full-time in a “yeshiva” or religious seminary.

The Haredim say that integrating into the army will threaten their generations-old way of life and that their dedication to Torah study protects “Israel” as much as a strong army.

Economists say the system is unsustainable. With its high birthrate, the Haredi community is the fastest-growing segment of the population, at about 4% annually. Each year, roughly 13,000 Haredi males reach the conscription age of 18, but fewer than 10% enlist, according to the Knesset’s Control Committee, which recently held a hearing on the matter.