Unhappy with the Israeli Defense Forces’ decision to include women in combat units, a group of senior rabbis from the national religious camp signed on to a statement Thursday urging IDF Chief of State Aviv Kohavi to cease efforts to draft women into combat units alongside men.
15 Rabbis joined forces to write a letter to Kohavi saying, “The Chief of Staff’s apparent decision to add more mixed units to the infantry brigades brings us much closer to an army of separate tribes.”They argued that soldiers who observe traditional Jewish law will not be able to serve in mixed units, leaving those that remain gender-segregated with a much higher percentage of Orthodox recruits.
״We call to avoid these dangerous steps and maintain the unity of the IDF and the unity of the nation, based on criteria that have always been accepted in the IDF,” they added.
IDF announced last Friday that women will be allowed to serve in the elite helicopter-borne search and rescue Unit 669 for the first time. The move was aimed at preempting a High Court of Justice decision on an appeal by four female recruits demanding full gender integration in the IDF, including in elite units such as Sayeret Matkal and Unit 669.