Hachrazah 5770 Teves 28
Informal translation from Hebrew of the 28 Tevet, 5770 (14 January 2010) statement:
Decision of the Sanhedrin’s Court on the matter of expulsion of the leading recruits from the Hesder track.
Their was an agreement signed some fifty years ago between the Army and the Hesder Rabbis determined that the Hesder Rabbis are the exclusive educational and spiritual authority of the recruits, and they are responsible for their religious and spiritual wellbeing and security. It was on these conditions of this track that the soldiers enlisted, who up until that time had turned to exclusive Yeshiva studies.
- The Defense Minister has no authority to remove soldiers from the Hesder track.
- It is obligatory that the Hesder Rabbis defend the soldiers from infringement of their rights, and from abuse, like receiving degrading army assignments.
- If the soldiers will not be returned, the soldiers will not enlist next year.
- The Hesder Yeshivot must sever ties with the army until the Army fulfills the conditions of this necessary correction.
The Defense Minister’s decision to transfer those who protested the use of soldiers, against the conscious of every person who is sensitive to individual rights, to a different track represents an infringement on soldiers’ rights and a unilateral annulment of the agreement with them. In addition, this act is a violation of judicial principles, as the soldiers were already “judged” and received “their punishment” [without proper judicial procedure].
The infringement of the Hesder agreement will lead to additional damaging of the state and army’s ability to come to agreements with its citizens, and of course with foreigners, wherein the confidence in their obligation to honor an agreement wanes constantly, iIn particular when this is a common practice (Like the abandonment of Yusuf Madheh, the abandonment of the soldiers of the Southern Lebanese Army, uprooting of settlements on the Sabbath in violation of the law, the expulsion of orphaned babies from their beds in the darkness of night in violation of the law, etc).
If the Defense Minister thinks that the soldiers are not suited for any reason, he can forego their service.
The behavior of the Defense Minister is a continual expression of the infringement of rights to learn Torah and to serve the nation while preserving the spiritual assets of the nation of Israel.
The Rabbis of the Hesder Yeshivot must stand united in defense of Rabbi Chaim Druckman, who has been spiritually ripped to pieces between the Torah of Israel and the defense establishment which is so dear to him. The defense establishment has spit in his face by causing his dismissal from his role as head of the conversion authority (the timing of his dismissal was termed “coincidental”…). This is because he “dared”, with soft words as one acting against his will, to defend the soldiers’ obligation to not fill illegal orders for which it is hard to find a precedent among the history of the nations, upon which the blacker than black flag of treason waves.
At the time of the crimes of the expulsion from Gaza, the Sanhedrin published, like others, a list of the many sins (about forty prohibitions) that any person becomes liable for in assisting that despicable act.
The rabbis and the public are not permitted to pardon affronts to the honor of Heaven.
It is obligatory that the heads of the Hesder Yeshivot cease cooperation with the Army, unless the punished soldiers are returned to the Hesder framework, and the removal of Rabbi Chaim Druckman is cancelled.
We call to those youths who stand before enlistment to choose Yeshiva Gedola instead of Hesder, as long as the injustice has not been corrected.
Rabbi Professor Hillel Weiss – Speaker
Rabbi Dov Stein - Secretary