For a first time, there has been a reduction in chareidi enlistment into the IDF, in 2018, registering a 20% decrease as compared to the previous year. The numbers were released in a report by Aharon Rabinowitz of the daily Haaretz.
The numbers released are not official of course, showing a reduction of 20% in the number of chareidim entering into the IDF in 2018 as compared to 2017. In the report, Rabinowitz explains the official numbers are not being released for fear they will be used for political gain in light of the ongoing government crisis and the dispute surrounding the nation’s draft laws.
In fact, the enlistment numbers should be available to all, but they are not. For example, in 2014, there were 2,203 new chareidi inductees. That year, the goal had been set for 2,300 chareidi inductees. A year later, there were 2,475 chareidi inductees and in 2016, there were 2,800, and in 2017, 3,070. However, for a first time, in 2018, there was a decline to 2,480, the number seen back in 2015.
Many believe the reason for the decline is the incitement against the chareidim during this period, which distanced many chareidim from deciding to enlist.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)