IDF soldiers from hesder yeshivas on Sunday evening walked out of a Combat Engineering Corps event after female soldiers from the military band ascended the stage to begin singing.
The ceremony in question took place at the Engineering Corps memorial site in Hulda, and was geared towards al of the Combat Engineering Corps soldiers. Religious soldiers inquired ahead of time as to whether female singers would be performing at the event, and received a promise that the event would not include women singing.
Jewish law does not permit men to listen to the singing of women who are not their first-degree relatives.
Despite the promise, at the beginning of the event, female singers from the military band ascended the stage, and soldiers from seven platoons of yeshiva students stood up and walked out.
"We inquired and they promised us ahead of time that women would not be singing," one of the soldiers told Israel National News - Arutz Sheva. "We inquired about this with our rabbi."
"The ceremony began with the singing of Hatikva, which a female singer sang. For this we did not want to walk out. We said we'd put our heads down and continue. And then they showed us a video clip of the Engineering Corps from the War of Independence, and when the clip ended the IDF band with male and female singers went up and began to sing.
"The yeshiva students walked out spontaneously. In the meantime, the officers have nothing to say to us. We just stood up and walked out. Most of the anger is about the fact that we asked prior to this and they told us that women would not be singing, and in the end we discovered that they hadn't even thought about it. There are seven platoons of yeshiva students here. They are excluding us from the ceremony. We came all the way here, four hours of travel there and back, for a ceremony which we cannot even participate in."