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(Illustration) Photo: Tzvika Tishler
(Illustration) Photo: Tzvika Tishler
 
 

State: Universal draft not best for IDF

In brief filed with High Court over petitions demanding the immediate draft of yeshiva boys State argues that expanding current draft 'is not feasible'; will strain IDF's resources and may impede primary missions

Aviel Magnezi
Published: 01.08.13, 18:53 / Israel News

"A universal draft of haredim is not necessarily in the best interest of the military," the State claimed in a brief filed Tuesday with the High Court of Justice.

 

The brief was meant to answer several petitions filed with the court following the expiration of Tal Law. The petitions demand that the government order the IDF to begin recruiting ultra-Orthodox men immediately.

 

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The court also asked the State to explain its outline of the haredi draft plan; which leans on data collected during the 1994-5 draft class and effectively excludes the enlisting of thousands of haredim between the ages of 19-30.

 

In the brief, obtained by Ynet, the State said that the complex preparations required from the IDF ahead of the draft strains the military's current resources and that a larger draft "is not feasible and will hurt the military."

 

The State argues that a universal draft will force the IDF to invest considerable funds in infrastructure which most likely will be rendered useless within a short while.

 

"Making the IDF divert such fund to facilitate this change will infringe on its ability to meet its primary missions and goals."

 

The brief explained that Tal Law stated a draft goal of 2,400 haredim by 2015; but the military now has to induct 19,500 ultra-Orthodox recruits in the same time period.

 

Absorbing such numbers into the military required the IDF to build more dedicated bases, so to accommodate the haredi soldiers' demand for the separation of men and women, as well as create new men-only battalions, for the same reason.

 

Another challenge, according to the State, is the IDF's own ability to screen haredi candidates – a process which also mandates the formation of all-male teams in every level of the induction bases: interviewers, doctors, placement coordinators and so on.

 

The IDF will also have to create a special series of aptitude tests, suited for the background and way of life of potential ultra-Orthodox recruits.

 

According to the State, the military is also weighing its options regarding haredi draft-dodgers, should a universal draft be enacted.

 

A source in the defense establishment called the potential universal draft "an unprecedented, historic and dramatic move," adding that the IDF would prefer the government to devise a solution to the various issued that arise from it.

 

 

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