The Netzach Yehuda Haredi battalion held a mass celebration at the Hebrew University marking 18 years since its inception, and the Nachal rabbis are satisfied with the historic achievement.
Rabbi Yaron David, one of the Nachal rabbis, tells Arutz Sheva that there is no doubt that the many battalions that emerged from Nahal Haredi indicate great success, as he put it.
"We had enormous Divine assistance and it shows that if you stick to it, in the end you succeed. When I looked yesterday at the graduates, some of whom have started model families and you see their religious and personal standards, you understand that you don't always see the benefits immediately. When we established the Nahal Haredi there were 32 soldiers. Today, besides the three yearly cycles, and the combat support program, there are haredim in the paratroops and in Givati, the Blue Dawn haredi unit, and many others."
According to David, the Appropriate Combination Order ostensibly intended to protect the values of religious soldiers but which in practice mandates activities against their conscience did not affect haredi battalions. "We have 70 percent graduates of haredi yeshivas and 30 percent knit kippahs from advanced yeshivas and I am very happy they are cooperating with the military. There are no girls in our battalions because there never were from the time Nahal haredi was established. One should know that unlike in your circles where you educate on certain values and the army from an early age, the young men who come here come from haredi backgrounds arrive without any preparation so they need a special framework and more attention."
Rabbi Yaron David calls to stop accentuating the actions of those who harass haredi soldiers: "This is a sad development but if not for the publicity it enjoys it would fade. It is a phenomenon specific to a very small group, in my opinion even in the Yerushalmi Faction you will not find people willing to beat soldiers; maybe some of them are bored. I can tell you that our soldiers wear their uniforms with their heads held high and that's how they go home."
Translated by Mordechai Sones