Saturday, May 12, 2012

Culture war looms as Israel pledges to end ultra-Orthodox military exemptions

JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dramatically bolstered his ruling coalition this week with a unity deal meant to help him thwart challenges from fringe factions. But Yoel Krois, a man with sidelocks past his shoulders and a record of confronting authorities, says he remains ready for a fight.

From his cramped Jerusalem office, Krois pens broadsides that paper his ultra-Orthodox neighborhood and serve as religious proclamations on issues of the day. One of the newest tells readers to resist a brewing plot to draft ultra-Orthodox Jews into the Israeli military.

“We will go to prison instead,” said Krois, 39, sitting beneath a photograph of himself defying police as he and fellow activists with an anti-Zionist organization known as Edah Haredit protested the opening of a parking lot on the Jewish Sabbath. “We are protected by God.”
Read the rest here.

Setting aside my frequent criticism of Israel's foreign policy and its treatment of its Arab neighbors this is a problem. Israel is a nation that is still surrounded by people who have vowed to destroy it. No one should be entitled to a free ride like this. Anyone who refuses public service in the military, or some other capacity for convicted pacifists, should lose their citizenship and the right to vote.


Eurasleep said...

"...No one should be entitled to a free ride like this. Anyone who refuses public service in the military..."

To take this logic a step further, I'm still waiting for the day when women in the US are required to sign up for selective service. Equal rights cuts both ways...not just when it's convenient for them.

Tony said...

John, sad to read your commentary. If I refuse to go to an illegal and immoral war to feed the military industrial complex, is your reply then that I should lose my citizenship? And you call yourself a supporter of Ron Paul? Please tell me I misunderstood you...

John (Ad Orientem) said...

Reread my comment. Conscientious objectors should have a non-military option for public service. That said if your country is under attack by people who have vowed to destroy it, and you are content to sit on your @$$ while others fight and die to protect you and your freedom, yes, I think you should forfeit your vote. I am not a radical libertarian (read anarchist).

A nation is like a community organization with lots of benefits. If you don't want to support it, that's fine. Your free choice. But the flip side of that freedom is that you don't have the right to demand the benefits from that community organization if you are not willing to pay your dues or otherwise support it.

There is no such thing as a free lunch.

Jason said...

Like L.F. Celine said, put them on the front lines. Not just in Occupied Palestine either, but in Iraq, Afghanistan, and then in Iran and Syria when those incursions come.