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Sunday, May 26, 2013

What if Israel's new draft law doesn't pass?

Oh the seculars hate the religious, and the religious hate the Arabs, and the Arabs hate the nationalists, but everyone hates the Haredim. (That's actually a take-off on a song I heard in college about Catholics and Protestants hating each other, which ended 'but everyone hates the Jews.' There's a lesson there we ought to be hearing).

It seems that all those people who want an 'equal burden' have only one thing in common: They all want to draft Haredim. And with the Perry Commission opening hearings on the proposed bill on Sunday evening, just about everyone is threatening to vote against it (link in Hebrew).

Sport and Culture Minister Limor Livnat (Likud) says that she will vote against the bill because of its criminal sanctions against draft evaders and yeshiva heads. She also wants the implementation period extended from three years to four... perhaps so that the bill won't need to be implemented before the next election.

Livnat also worries about how having Haredim in the IDF will impact women's roles. It goes without saying that for most of the Haredim, serving in close quarters with women will be considered 'to die rather than violate.'

The Tzipi Livni party says that they will vote against the bill unless it treats the Hesder yeshivas equally with the Haredim. But of course, the discrimination in favor of the Hesder yeshivas was one of the Jewish Home party's motivations for supporting the bill and they are not willing to give that up. As currently written, the bill removes the shorter army service period for Hesder yeshivas as compared with everyone else.

Both Livni and Jewish Home want to see Arabs serve. But Livni only wants to see them in national service, and says that her party will vote in favor of the bill without a section binding the Arabs. Jewish Home will not vote for the bill unless it includes the Arabs. At present, it does not.

'Equality of burden' for thee but not for me? What could go wrong?

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At 5:03 PM, Blogger Shy Guy said...

That song is National Brotherhood Week, by Tom Lehrer.


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