Media Roots: Ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israel Draw the Line

Media Roots: Ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israel Draw the Line

Photo of ultra-Orthodox protest in New York by Rebecca Hiscott in Observer.com *Comment: This is the third version of our article and includes a greater elaboration on the historical figure of Jacob Israel de Haan. Posted on April 21, 2014 by Ronnie Barkan and Joshua Tartakovsky Media Roots Prime Minister David Cameron got more than he expected at the Israeli Knesset in his recent visit, receiving a cold shoulder from ultra-Orthodox and Palestinian legislators who share common interests, being the state’s most oppressed communities. Cameron’s visit to the Knesset took place on the same day that two controversial laws, the Conscription Law and the Governability Law, were finally approved following a prolonged legislative battle. As Prime Minister Netanyahu welcomed the guest of honour the ultra-Orthodox parliamentarians left the plenary session in protest while their colleagues, Palestinian Members of the Knesset, refused to attend the event altogether. This was the culmination point of several months of heated protest over the Conscription Law which brought to the surface contradictions between Zionism and Judaism. Hundreds of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews (Haredim) of all denominations took to the streets of Jerusalemto oppose the draft law several days before its legislation. In a mass prayer, the worshippers-protesters declared their faithfulness to Torah study rather than to the military. United under the banner declaring that “the State of Israel is fighting against the Kingdom of Heaven” they held signs stating that military draft is a spiritual suicide. The event was not merely an opposition to the law but nothing short of a battle cry against the very legitimacy of a state that encroaches upon their spiritual autonomy and poses a danger to their religious liberty....
Tikkun: Ultra-Orthodox Jews Draw the Line

Tikkun: Ultra-Orthodox Jews Draw the Line

Photo by Abir Sultan / EPA by: Ronnie Barkan and Joshua Tartakovsky on April 4th, 2014 Tikkun Net Daily A recent law obligating military service on religious Yeshiva students reveals the inherent flaw in Israel’s claim to be Jewish An earlier version of this article has appeared on AlterNet Prime Minister David Cameron got more than he expected at the Israeli Knesset in his last visit, receiving a cold shoulder from ultra-Orthodox and Palestinian legislators who share common interests, being the state’s most oppressed communities. Cameron’s visit to the Knesset took place on the same day that two controversial laws, the Conscription Law and the Governability Law, were finally approved following a prolonged legislative battle. As Prime Minister Netanyahu welcomed the guest of honour the ultra-Orthodox parliamentarians left the plenary session in protest while their colleagues, Palestinian Members of the Knesset, refused to attend the event altogether. This was the culmination point of several months of heated protest over the Conscription Law which brought to the surface contradictions between Zionism and Judaism. Hundreds of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews (Haredim) of all denominations took to the streets of Jerusalem to oppose the draft law several days before its legislation. In a mass prayer, the worshippers-protesters declared their faithfulness to Torah study rather than to the military. United under the banner declaring that “the State of Israel is fighting against the Kingdom of Heaven” they held signs stating that military draft is a spiritual suicide. The event was not merely an opposition to the law but nothing short of a battle cry against the very legitimacy of a state that encroaches upon their spiritual autonomy and poses a danger...
AlterNet: God, Not Militarism: Ultra Orthodox Jews Say No to Guns and Ammo

AlterNet: God, Not Militarism: Ultra Orthodox Jews Say No to Guns and Ammo

Photo by TheNewsTribe  AlterNet / By Joshua Tartakovsky, Ronnie Barkan March 23, 2014   A recent law pushing military service on religious Yeshiva students reveals the flaw in Israel’s claim to be a “Jewish state.” An Israeli soldier training. Photo Credit: Israel Defense Forces/Flickr British Prime Minister David Cameron got more than he expected at the Israeli Knesset when he visited the country, receiving a cold shoulder from ultra-Orthodox and Palestinian legislators who share common interests, being the state’s most oppressed communities. Cameron’s visit to the Knesset took place on the same day that two controversial laws, the Conscription Law and the Governability Law, were finally approved following a prolonged legislative battle. As Prime Minister Netanyahu welcomed the guest of honour, the ultra-Orthodox parliamentarians left the plenary session in protest while their colleagues, Palestinian Members of the Knesset, refused to attend the event altogether. This was the culmination point of several months of heated protest over the Conscription Law which brought to the surface contradictions between Zionism and Judaism. Hundreds of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews (Haredim) of all denominations took to the streets of Jerusalem to oppose the draft law several days before it passed. In a mass prayer, the worshippers-protesters declared their faithfulness to Torah study rather than to the military. United under a banner declaring that “the State of Israel is fighting against the Kingdom of Heaven,” they held signs stating that military draft is spiritual suicide. The event was not merely showcasing opposition to the law, but nothing short of a battle cry against the very legitimacy of a state that encroaches upon their spiritual autonomy and poses a danger to their religious liberty. Under the slogan...