IDF Extends Basic Training for Avreichim – Response is Anger

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Chareidi inductees into the IDF that entered the service on June 10, 2012 were told they would be in a very simple basic training program that will result in their certification as ‘02’, the most basic level. These are soldiers ranging in age from 27-33, avreichim with wives and families.

According to a Chadrei Chareidim report, they are quite angry at present after learning their 3-4 week basic training will be extended, apparently to 5-6 weeks. They are being certified as what is called רובאי 02, a non-combatant profile certification. The avreichim feel that they were lied to and this added weeks will result in significant hardships at home, since they planned to be in basic training up to one month, no more.

“M” is quoted as saying “The promise was made to all of us, that the track is exclusively for chareidim, and the basic training would last between 3-4 weeks for those who are not being certified as combat soldiers”.

“In actuality, our company commander has informed us that the basic training is being extended to a month-and-a-half. This is an order from above and it cannot be changed”.

According to the IDF Spokesman, the basic training was extended by one additional week, no more, to five weeks. This is the message that the soldiers received, the spokesman’s office explained.

One soldier who responded to the above statement told Chadrei “We were drafted on June 10th until July 20th, which according to my calculation is six weeks”.

Chadrei quotes Rabbi Shimshon Klein, rav of the air force’s Shachar program as saying “I just heard about this. For the past two years I was serving as the rav of base in Haifa and I never heard of a basic training for non-combatants lasting more than a month. I will do my best to have the order rescinded”.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

15 COMMENTS

  1. has anyone heard about those nuts in iran???
    or the chaos in Syria and egypt? how about Lebanon and gaza?
    there is likely a reason they extended!
    Tizku Limitzvot serving our country

  2. to #1 and 2 i can tell that you are totally ehrlich(yea right) this is another example of y chareidim want nothing to do with the israeli govnt- they hold exclusive rights on lying. whatever garbage they pull , there is always an apologist on hand to make excuses for them but let a frum person do something questonable and everybody(from the chiloni/ modern ortho side) is all over it – no excuses accepted

  3. If you cannot believe what the army promises on the reatively minor matters, it doesnt bode well for believing what the army will no doubt promise in accommodating all those tens of thousands of chareidim that some people wish to draft.

  4. Peakman it’s not funny. If you were told you had to stay at work till 8PM and then your boss said “sorry we’re pulling an all nighter” you’d be angry too. These guys didn’t sign up for this abuse, they are just pawns in a bigger war against the Charedi community in general.

  5. You cannot adequately train a shamas to clean and organize the beis medrash in 4 weeks; how can you train a soldier in less time. They are whining about nothing.

  6. In hachi nami it’s frustrating. Personally, I served in the US military for 12 years, and my son is in the Israeli Nahal Haredi. And that’s what happens: sometimes the mission changes, orders are extended, you get hit with an unexpected deployment, or the senior leadership has shifting priorities. That’s life, what can you do but say, “gam zu l’tovah,” and press on with a good attitude. When I was in Afghanistan leading Rosh Hashana services a few years ago, I had two Kohanim show up for davening — one Ashkenaz, one Sefard — both were special forces officers. Right in the middle of Pesukei D’zimra, they got recalled for a special op to take out a high value target. So what did we do? Baruch sh’Amar, Ashrei, Nishmas, Yishtabach, straight thru to the end of Amidah. Then we did tekios, I gave them their kosher rations and extra machzorim to finish Mussaf when they finished the mission, and gamarnu! Baruch HaShem, we had a Torah presence there amongst all the gentiles — who were very respectful and supportive (even the Arab Christian translator who hung around the chapel). Being a frum yid means trying to make a kiddush HaShem in every circumstance. So these avreichim got stuck pulling extra training. OK, onus dRachman patrei, keep learning the mission, focus on being a ben Torah in those challenging conditions, learn when you can, and be a mench to everyone.

  7. It’s about keeping promises. Much more serious reports are coming out, of a kitchen with no mashgiach, that got treifed up (albeit by accident); of soldiers being ordered to break Shabbos for non-lifesaving tasks; of having to go without hearing the megillah on Purim, not being given the promised time for davening and learning, and worse. If that’s the way the IDF keeps its word, why should anyone want to join?

  8. Whether itt is necessary or not, everyone who pooh-poohs this ignores the basic fact that this is basic training, a known quantity. The schedule doesn’t change that suddenly. The army either snafued or lied.

  9. Has anyone ever heard about those ‘nuts’ in the soch’nut’ or the chaos in the Knesset?! Brooklynhocker you said it all.

  10. AvrahamYishai, the difference is that the Israeli “army” exists for the purpose of uprooting Yiddishkeit. It uses deceit like a regime I don’t dare mention and forces those who accept the bait to compromise on Yiddishkeit, ruins their ability to get a shidduch, etc.

  11. In order to understand the soldiers’ outrage, one needs to understand the context. #5 is completely on target.

    Over the past year or so, the IDF has made a number of moves that curtail the religious freedome of its soldiers in general – not only chareidim. These steps, coupled with the tension in the country over the issue of chareidim in the army going on right now, has led to an extreme distrust of the higher-ups in the IDF. I stress, the higher ups – not the soldiers on the ground.

    That’s the background for being so upset at an extension of 1-2 weeks – especially because it’s unheard of.

    #6, these men are too old to be trained for combat. The IDF does not train 27 year olds with families to be combat soldiers.

  12. While the basic training in question is of course a mere token jesture compared to regularcombat training, I wonder if people’s attitude would be different if the regular 3 year basic training/deployment was extended by 25% arbitrarily. I suspect that it would not be a case of shrugging and saying In Hachi Nami. If one’s 12 years of distinguished service was, without warning or agreement extended by 25% to 16 years I suspect it would not be “ln Hachi Nami”. By the sounds of the article it was not a combat mission to take out a high value target but rather unusual extra drudgery inflicted on these people training in non combat roles.

  13. To: AvrahamYishai – All I can say is perfectly well said! Thanks!

    To: brooklynhocker – Yes, my friend, that’s exactly what many of us in the working world go through every day! We don’t have the luxury of jobs that let us go home when the whistle blows. We must stay until the work is done. I’ve been working in medicine since 1993 and VERY often we have to stay very late until the work is done – we don’t just walk out the door just b/c our contract with the hospital says we work until 5pm! Perhaps the avreichim are used to a world where they can show up when they want to, sip coffee, chat on their cell phones, maybe learn a little bit. However, that’s not the way the world works for the rest of us.

    Maybe this is why Hashem is changing the avreichim’s world like this right now – making them serve a shtickel time in the army – to remind them of the beautiful world they’ve had and maybe give them some mussar as to why they need to take it a bit more seriously. Maybe their learning will even improve when they get a taste of the world they’ve been benefiting from without feeling much of a hakarat hatov for.

    I’ve seen many arguments that say their learning is the reason why the soldiers are succesful at protecting the Jewish people. However, I take issue with that b/c the vast majority of the avreichim (that I have been exposed to) do NOT treat their job (learning Torah) as being as fair counterparts to their brothers who are fighting in the army. In fact, I have found many of the avreichim who will sit there being mevatel Torah & speak loshon hara about those very “zionist” soldiers. Perhaps, if the avreichim were serious about becoming a part of the more global Jewish people (and not just the frum Jews that they affiliate themselves with), they would learn with all of the Jewish people and Jewish soldiers in mind – in a positive way. They would institute programs to bring their learning to their brothers-in-arms. Perhaps travel to the army bases and checkpoints to learn b’chavruta with the soldiers who are not actively on-duty and haven’t had the good fortune to have been raised in a good frum home & been sent to a yeshiva for a good Jewish education.

    Did you know that the IDF has a rabbinical division that doesn’t just act as chaplains?? They have a whole Beit Midrash set up that addresses halachic & spiritual issues for the soldiers. They publish seforim & maintain a hotline for soldiers to call. Do you think these rabbonim get up & walk out in the middle of a phone call with a soldier just b/c it’s 5pm and the army told them that’s quitting time!?!?!

    Oh, right – I forgot, when it comes to arguments like these, many in the chareidi movement reflex into the excuse that we refuse to be metamei ourselves with “those zionists.” Does it frustrate you that some Jews are not exactly like you and they have become less religious than you’d like? Does it bother you that some Jews have been led to believe that the State is a form of a subtitute for Hashem’s Torah? Perhaps you (all of us) need to roll up our sleeves & do our part to improve things & not just divest ourselves of our fellow Jews by writing them off as “those zionists.” Do you think all of this is a new problem? Moshe Rabbeinu faced similar issues with the Jews in the Midbar. We built a golden calf for crying out loud! Did Moshe write us off & go back to his blot of Gemara?!?! Did he hold a rock-throwing protest in Kikar Shabbat!?!?

    Perhaps we can take a lesson from HaRosh Yeshiva HaGadol HaDor Moreh D’Asra Maran Posek HaDor HaRav HaGaon v’HaKadosh HaGaavad Moshe Rabeinu, Shlita and work WITH our fellow Jewish brothers to improve things. Moshe stood up & rallied the Jews to do teshuvah. He specifically worked WITH them. Yes, there were sinners who were sentenced to death but those were the ones who truly denied Hashem. The vast majority of Jews living in Israel today are religious to some extent or another. They are often “mesorati” but feel very close to Hashem. It’s the job of the more frum Jews to bring us all closer – in a positive way! Not by throwing rocks or slurs at them! Moshe Rabbeinu invited the faithful Jews into his tent to get closer to Hashem. He didn’t exclude those who were not wearing the same color robe and sandals as him. He didn’t insult or reject the ones who were wearing New York Yankees turbans instead of Borsalino turbans!

    The leadership in the government of Israel are often a skewed view of the people living here. The government tends to be left wing, anti-religious. However, that only continues b/c the religious allow it to. We splinter into tiny factions and parties that only represent our little sector of the world. If all of this truly bothers you (l’shaim shamayim), then it’s time for everyone to move here and change things for the better. Stop pointing out the flaws and become a part of the solution. Join the future of the Jewish people. (Hint: the future does not lay in America)

  14. Rbs.jew – you missed the whole point and instead prattled on about how much you think you know. What I’m saying is these 30 year old guys already signed up for the basic training- don’t go ahead and make their lives more miserable. Oh and I can name a doctor or two that wasn’t available for their patient because he already scheduled “vacation”. Lumping in every Avreich is as silly as saying not one doctor has a good bedside manner “that I’ve meet”- it’s immature and baseless.