`312 A Convenient Controversy Over the Draft
Chananya Weissman

March 13, 2024


The latest communist diversion to incite Jews against each other, instead of unifying against our common enemies from within, is to make a brouhaha about drafting yeshiva students into the army. This is one of the Erev Rav's go-to pressure points to exploit in times of great need – such as when too many people are no longer buying the lies and deflections about October 7, and when enthusiasm to continue sending our finest people into the Gaza meat grinder to be maimed under dubious pretenses is finally starting to wane.

The questions are becoming louder. The doubts are becoming stronger. The fear of following orders is becoming almost as great as the fear of resisting them.

In the past, it would be enough for a “wave” of terrorist attacks or some rockets from Gaza to distract the people from the bigger picture and rally around their “leaders”. Spilled Jewish blood, funerals, and ceremonies are wonderful props to turn people's attention away from inconvenient matters and manipulate their emotions.

But sometimes even that is not enough. After all, too much bloodletting will eventually bring a backlash. The anger of the people must be channeled away from our internal enemies, the ones who are most responsible for our suffering.

The anger of the people must be channeled against each other.

The October 7 bloodletting and hostage taking was no accident, intelligence failure, or far-fetched political maneuver (if you still believe that, just board a train to Auschwitz already and be done with it). For five months Jews have been getting maimed and killed in Gaza under the pretense of “bringing the hostages home NOW” and “destroying Hamas”, while the WEF sellouts who rule our land have continued to advance their agenda.

The brainwashed masses have continued to support their own shmad in all sorts of ways, buying into every propaganda campaign that makes them feel good (Buy underwear for the soldiers!), bad (Empty chairs for the hostages!), strong (With unity we will win!), and weak (More surveillance, less freedom, evacuate our border communities!) all at once. How they pull those emotional strings!

But even that is not enough. Too many people refuse to “not ask questions until the war is over”. So they must be distracted. Too many people are angry. So their anger must be released and channeled.

The Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel, Yitzchak Yosef, recently made a statement that was widely publicized, as it was intended to be. This is not because it was an inspiring Torah teaching; those don't receive such widespread attention, of course. It's because it was an inflammatory, extremely divisive bit of rhetoric phrased in just the right way to ensure maximum corrosive effect.

Before we dissect the actual rhetoric, a bit more background is needed.

The Chief Rabbi of Israel is a most impressive-sounding title. It evokes a fantasy that the one who bears this title is the most prestigious and important rabbi in the world, or at least one of the most. Since many people reflexively buy into this fantasy – titles and pomp are powerful devices, after all – this individual achieves a measure of actual prestige and importance by mere virtue of the title. His actual worthiness or lack thereof, however, is a separate matter entirely. The Chief Rabbi is not appointed based on merit, as determined by the greatest rabbis of the generation, who themselves achieved their stature through an organic process, or by the people themselves, whose leaders must be acceptable to them according to the Torah.

The Chief Rabbi is a political appointee. His office is a branch of the Israeli government. He is selected by a board of 150 people who work for the Israeli government. This board consists of state-employed rabbis, mayors, ministers, members of the Knesset, and other political figures.

Not exactly how Moshe Rabbeinu set it up. Not exactly how one becomes a judge on the Sanhedrin. More like how the Kohen Gadol was appointed during Bayis Sheni.

Naturally, candidates for the position engage in all sorts of horse-trading to earn favor with their political colleagues and stave off their rivals. The Torah-hating media has a field day with this every few years when longtime state-employed rabbinic politicians jockey for the prestigious position. This circus brings great scorn for the Torah and rabbis – just as the Erev Rav designed it.

We should also note that Israel has both an Ashkenazic and Sephardic Chief Rabbi, because making things about race and ethnicity is one of the best ways to divide the Jewish people under the guise of catering to those from both divisions. With unity we will win, except when disunity better serves the agenda.

The Chief Rabbi must also declare his allegiance to the State of Israel. He does not declare his allegiance to the Torah and the Jewish people, because it is not the Torah and the Jewish people for whom he actually works; it is the State of Israel.

If there is a conflict between the position of the Torah and those who pay his salary, the Chief Rabbi is expected to reconcile the former with the latter, not the reverse. Whatever Torah knowledge he might actually possess is to be used for this purpose.

Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef dutifully declared that the Covid poison shots are mandatory according to Jewish law (source), that cellphone use was obligated on Shabbos so the Health Ministry could send “lifesaving information” (source), that synagogues and public prayer must be shut down based on edicts from the health overlords (source), that Jews should avoid the Western Wall (source), writing that “No halachic instruction exists that would overrule the instructions of the Health Ministry. The halachic instruction is to obey absolutely all the instructions of the Health Ministry without exception, and every order produced by them is a halachic order for all intents and purposes.”

Yosef concurrently made a habit of publicly flouting these same instructions (source), which is exactly what a Chief Rabbi would do if the actual purpose of this figure, who works for the Erev Rav state, is intended to both mislead Jews who observe the Torah and bring hatred upon them from those who don't.

When we understand this, much of the behavior of Chief Rabbis that seems confounding and hypocritical actually makes perfect sense.

With all this in mind, we can now address Yosef's most recent provocative remarks.

In recent weeks, the same Erev Rav and WEF snakes who presided over the October 7 shmad and subsequent meat grinder in Gaza began heatedly calling for yeshiva students to be drafted into the army. As noted in the beginning, this is one of their go-to ways to turn the people's anger away from them and against each other.

With one fork of the tongue the snakes warn us that the IDF is suffering from a “manpower shortage”.

This is a dubious claim. First of all, this is the same IDF that failed so spectacularly on October 7 and stood down for many hours; more draftees would not have prevented that. Second of all, sending soldiers into death traps on highly questionable grounds is the best way to create a manpower shortage, and forcing more people to enter the meat grinder is not the best way to alleviate it.

But we're not supposed to think about that. We're supposed to hate yeshiva students.

With another fork of the tongue they wail about how everyone needs to “contribute”, and how “unfair” it is that some segments of society are going into booby-trapped tunnels while others are sitting in yeshiva studying Torah.

THIS is the bait everyone can't resist. The Dati Leumi cultists, who made a religion out of serving the state, a holy of holies out of the IDF, and the greatest act of worship to die on their behalf like an offering to Molech, react with fury against the so-called “charedim”. We're dying to protect you! You think you're better than us! You don't even care about us!

The only thing that will satisfy the Dati Leumi cultists is an equal number of “charedim” having their legs blown off or worse in the meat grinder. It's only fair.

The secular citizens, who don't take the Dati Leumi seriously anyway but loathe the “charedim”, also take the bait. Their virtue-signaling about unity, fairness, and dying to protect ungrateful religious people quickly segues into vicious tropes about Torah-observant Jews that Goebells couldn't have said better himself.

All of this is encouraged by the Erev Rav media and useful idiots who parrot the propaganda from their soapboxes and deem themselves clever.

Then, to make the controversy and infighting really boil over, Chief Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef took the mic. “If they force us to go to the army, we'll all go to Chutz La'aretz [leave the country]”. (Interestingly, Yosef also scoffed at the IDF for failing on October 7, though this did not receive attention.)

I cannot claim to know what is in this man's heart. But if Rabbi Yosef's desired outcome was to generate the maximum amount of controversy, bring as much hatred upon yeshiva students as possible, and validate the negative stereotypes against them, he couldn't have done any better.

This is hardly the approach the Chief Rabbi of Israel would be expected to take – especially when the Chief Rabbi of Israel is employed by the State and must declare his allegiance to the State – unless this is an unwritten part of his job description: misleading those who observe the Torah while bringing hatred upon them from those who don't.

You can be certain Chief Rabbi Yosef will not lose his job for contradicting his declaration to be loyal to the state, for there is in fact no contradiction.

You can be certain Yosef will not personally leave the country and his prestigious government position – but the kofrim for whom he works would be delighted if Torah-observant Jews did just that, while those who remain are hated even more by the rest of society. All the easier to deal with the greatest threat to the Erev Rav agenda.

For their part, many Roshei Yeshiva and others who deign to represent the “charedi” position are also taking the wrong approach. They make sweeping statements about Torah study protecting in lieu of participating in physical fighting. This is true to a certain extent, but it's a highly nuanced matter, and by no means grounds for all who study Torah full-time, part-time, or any amount of time to be exempt from participating in a Jewish army. That was simply never the case.

They claim that “the tribe of Levi” – which they generously redefine to include all who assume the artificial label of “charedi” – is exempt from military service. This is not only untrue according to Jewish law, but historically untrue, dating back to Moshe Rabbeinu, who actually brought the Torah down from Sinai, then fought in wars (he personally killed Og). Moshe was from the actual tribe of Levi and the greatest “learner”, too.

They argue apologetically that “charedim” contribute to society in many ways; they volunteer for Zaka, and Hatzalah, and produce the greatest Torah scholars, and teach Torah far and wide, and run charitable organizations that serve everyone. This is all true – “charedim” excel in these areas like no other segment of society – but it is a poor response to those whose loved ones were maimed and killed.

I would have advised these rabbis to explain calmly and reasonably why much of the religious population (myself included, and I'm certainly not “charedi”) wants nothing to do with the IDF. It's for many of the same reasons Jews wanted nothing to do with the Russian army during the cantonist decree, only with Western Amalekite influences and Erev Rav betrayal of Jewish life thrown in for good measure.

And I would have advised them to explain that these same reasons apply to ALL Jews, “charedi” or otherwise. The only solution is a truly Jewish army that is run by Torah-observant, God-fearing people according to Torah law.

That needs to be the goal. That needs to be the discussion.

I would also have advised them to explain that NO ONE should be drafted into the army – not yeshiva students, not secular people, or anyone in between. Drafting people is essentially a form of kidnapping, human trafficking, and slavery – generally for the benefit of the rich and powerful who profit from wars. Other nations take people against their will and force them into wars. We don't do that.

According to the Torah, there is certainly a religious obligation to engage in war at times, but this is not upheld by forcing people to join the army. Jews historically volunteered to fight for the sake of their land and their people; we don't need to be forced. But we do need leaders who are worthy of our trust, not kofrim and WEF snakes.

In addition, Jewish law provides so many exemptions to fighting in wars – including to one who is afraid (either of war itself or his sins, depending on different opinions) – that much of the bickering over yeshiva students is rendered moot.

Furthermore, even if some people who should fight choose not to for inappropriate reasons, we should not concern ourselves with a potential “manpower shortage”. The Torah makes it abundantly clear that our success in wars depends not on the number of soldiers, but on the spiritual standing of the nation. We have an obligation to take certain worldly measures, of course, but as long as this obligation is minimally fulfilled, the outcome will be determined by other factors. Hashem will hold accountable those who shirk their obligations, but the war will not be won or lost because of them, nor may we force anyone to fight.

If we are going to discuss who fights in the army and under what conditions, this needs to be the approach. It is truly fair and truly unifying, unlike the hate-mongering from Erev Rav snakes.

I urge everyone to stop taking their bait and join together in building a truly Jewish state that runs according to Torah law – with an army that does the same.

Such an army I will be honored to join, and I have no doubt that Hashem would grant us victory beyond anything we could imagine.



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