Photo: Meir Partush
Eitan Haber
Photo: Meir Partush

The IDF’s real problem

Op-ed: Draft dodging issue to die down soon; we should be more concerned about army’s strength

As opposed to what you think about the haredi draft dodging issue, and with all due respect (and there is much respect) to political crises and screaming headlines, in two weeks or two months we will likely not even remember this national drama.


It is true that we can see a little more understanding among the haredim to the needs of the State, but we should not be exaggerating: They will make a symbolic sacrifice, and continue to live their utterly different lives in complete separation.


They will enlist for, mostly, national and civil service, and that too is dignified and appropriate. However, we should not be breaking into dance: They will not be flooding the IDF’s draft offices.


And as to the IDF, there should be no mistake about it: the enlistment of large numbers of haredi soldiers (as well as national-religious soldiers in recent years) will require the army to create a new way of life and introduce new codes of conduct at many units, including the seclusion of women.


We have been there before: In the 1960s, no military vehicle was allowed to travel on the Shabbat unless it received a permit from a major-general. Do we really want to go back in the time tunnel?


And while we’re talking about the IDF, with all due respect (and there is much respect) to reports in recent years about the Israeli army’s rehabilitation and its return to being “one of the most powerful militaries in the world,” we must pay attention to some more recent reports.


IDF reservists who returned from a long bout of service recently claimed that they encountered many flaws, unpreparedness, and indifference to the problems. They said that the state of the army is far from what we are being told.


If they are wrong, nothing happened. But what if they’re right?



פרסום ראשון: 07.08.12, 12:30
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