The “Srugim” dati leumi website headline reads “Lacking Emunah, the chareidi yeshivos run for the south” as rockets continue to pound cities within a 40km (24 miles) range of the Gaza border.
The report quotes a Kikar Shabbos articles citing that litvish yeshivos are closing shop as well as yeshivos affiliated with Gur and Belzer Chassidim, all ordered to pack and evacuate until the rocket fire halts.
The article adds that hesder yeshivot in southern areas are not evacuating, but opting to continue their limud Torah as usual with the exception of talmidim who left beis medrash to assist communities under fire. When a siren sounds, the talmidim simply run to shelters as residents in the same areas do.
Rosh Yeshivat Sderot Rabbi Dovid Fendel is quoted saying “Davka during a time of war it is prohibited for talmidei chacham to leave the city”. The rosh yeshiva fears if residents see talmidim running while they remain it leaves them with an extremely bad feeling and it does not strengthen their resolve during a difficult time.
Since the Sderot Hesder Yeshiva has endured years of countless rocket attacks, due to the rosh yeshiva’s efforts and his mesirus nefesh, most of the campus is fortified against rockets, permitting the continuation of limud Torah under fire. However he and his talmidim also remained under fire during the difficult years prior to having the fortified beis medrash.
For those familiar with the Sderot Hesder Yeshiva, Rabbi Fendel and his talmidim have over the difficult years of enduring rocket attacks served as a bastion of chizuk for the local residents, remaining with them under the harshest of conditions and rocket fire.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)