Overcoming the Separation

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6 Responses

  1. yitz says:

    \”Our insulation is a function also of not having children serving in the army.\” Perhaps the time has come for the Chareidi yeshiva world to re-examine its stance vis-a-vis military service in Eretz Yisrael. Especially now with Nachal Chareidi and Hesder, the options for religious boys to serve in the Army without affecting their frumkeit are not what they were in the past. Just ask any one of the very religious Chardal boys in Har Nof, Rechovot, or elsewhere in Israel.

    \”Our guests related with excitement how Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef had announced at Yom Kippur Kattan that the Sephardi yeshivot should cancel bein hazemanim. (That call was echoed in a letter from the BaDaTz of the Eidah HaChareidis and another from the Bostoner Rebbe.) And they asked us repeatedly whether our sons’ yeshivos would do the same.\”

    Mention should also be made of the \”twinning\” program [elef l\’mateh, elef l\’mateh] called for by Rav Simcha Kook of Rechovot and the Bostoner Rebbe Shlita. Regarding this, I received the following message:

    \”In 1992, I heard Rabbi Zev Leff talk about when he was Rosh Yeshiva (head of the Yeshiva) during a war in Israel…I don\’t want to scare you with this, but Rav Leff — I\’ll never forget this — told his boys in yeshiva, \’OK, our soldiers are in the trenches, in the tanks, out on the front line. And they don\’t get to go home and sleep in their cozy beds after a 10 or 12 hour day. They are on duty and on call 24 hours around the clock. So as of now, so are we. Yeshiva learning hours are extended to be [I don\’t remember, but it was every waking hour].

    \’And I want every boy here to know that if he so much as stops learning Torah for two minutes to take a drink of water at the water cooler, for those two minutes, he is endangering a Jewish soldier\’s life on the battlefield.\’\”

  2. HILLEL says:


    I know you mean well, but your comment sadly illustrates the attitude of all too many Chareidi-Leumi, who feel that Torah should be subordinated to service in the IDF.

    Uninterrupted Torah learning is crucial to those who are fighting on the front. Those who fight are utterly dependent on those who learn for their very lives and safety.

    Who knows haw many casualties are avoided–on the front and in the cities under rocket attack–because of the intensive Torah learning that is now in progress in Eretz Yisroel and all over the world.

    The Yeshivos are our answer to the long-range missles from Syria and Iran.

  3. Aryeh says:

    HILLEL, I agree with you. But then what follows is that those who are not capable of such intense learning, should join the army. Better fight than battel. There are enough bachurim (if my assumption that American and Israeli bachurim are similar is correct) that fit this description.

  4. Baruch Horowitz says:

    ‘And I want every boy here to know that if he so much as stops learning Torah for two minutes to take a drink of water at the water cooler, for those two minutes, he is endangering a Jewish soldier’s life on the battlefield.’”

    In general, I think that it is wise to “adopt” mussar one hears for one’s personal situation.

    In cases of people not engaged in twenty-four hour Torah learning(i.e., a mother preparing meals on Tisha B’aav, or a person, in general, working), this becomes a challenge. However,the “twinning” attitude is important, for both reasons of generating zechusim, and because of the Rambam that Rabbi Rosenblum mentions.

    I would say that one should at least think of the soldiers as one gets a drink of water, or the equivalent. Even this is easier said than done. From reading descriptions of American soldiers during WWII, it is apparent that one can not understand the fear of combat, unless one participates in it. It is true, that soldiers do not stop for an instant in the heat of battle, even to say, break for a cigarette.

    There is much for civilians to learn from Jewish soldiers, especially about “yesh koneh olomo b’shaah achas”–it is not limited to the times of Chazal(see both stories on Rabbi Adlerstein’s thread).

  5. Gershon says:

    I\’m not going to enter a full debate with HILLEL, but I would just like to add a short story:

    During Gulf War I in 1991, the IDF and Civil Defense staff in conjunction with Kol Israel set up a silent channel for shabbos similar to the current situation that exists today.

    The job of pushing the button on shabbos that would activate the sirens and other announcements fell to a well known RA\”M serving his milu\’im. This RA\”M was well known to be a baki b\’shas uposkim.

    I just have one question to ask: Who would you rather have to be mechallel shabbos (even if it\’s due to pikuach nefesh and therefore possibly not even called chillul shabbos), someone who knows EXACTLY what he is doing, why he is doing it and what violations of shabbos he\’s performing on behalf of k\’lal yisroel, or someone who doesn\’t know anything about it at all?

  6. HILLEL says:


    Any Jew who learns Torah–whatever his capabilities–serves as a shield and protector of Klal Yisroel. “Lo Nitna Torah Lemalachei HaShores”–The Torah was not given exclusively to angels.

    Frankly, the IDF, which fully integrates women and homosexuals into its ranks, is a very dangerous immoral environment for anyone who has a serious commitment to Torah and Yiddishkeit–especially young impressionable boys. Read this article, and weep:


    Here is why we are having such a tough time with Hamas and Hizbollah:

    By David Meir-Levi
    FrontPageMagazine.com | February 24, 2006

    Hamas’ Long Range Plans
    Mahmoud az-Zahar lays out the character of the Islamist Palestinian state according to the Hamas vision: “This will be a state which will be based on the principals of the Shari’a and will be part of the Arab Islamist Umma,” he says. “In the Shari’a-led Palestine, mixed dancing will be prohibited.

    In Hamas’ Palestine, homosexuals and lesbians which Zahar defines as “a minority of moral and mental deviants” will have no rights.” In the Islamist Palestinian state, says Zahar, each Palestinian citizen will be required to behave according to the Shari’a. (17)

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