Christmas tree
Christmas treeISTOCK

IDF enlistment officer Lt.-Col. Tzachi Revivo, deputy commander of the Meiav Unit, wrote today (Sunday) a special letter to the commanders and soldiers of the Northern Command in which he explained that today, in addition to Hanukkah, the IDF would celebrate "another holiday that is common to all denominations in Christianity, Christmas."

"According to the New Testament," Revivo continued, "Christmas marks the birth of Jesus to Mary in Bethlehem. The different denominations mark the holiday at different times (most celebrants will celebrate the holiday on December 25). The figure of Santa Claus is central to the holiday and there are other customs - having a tree in the center of the house, a celebratory meal, and the giving of presents."

Revivo said that there is a connection between Hanukkah and Christmas: "This year the holidays fall out at the same time and are celebrated together. You can even find a connection between the two - [they are both] family holidays of joy and light, of feasting, of giving gifts, of togetherness."

One of the Golani Brigade soldiers who received the letter told Israel National News - Arutz Sheva: "I think they went a little bit over the line!"

The 'Torat Lechima' organization stated: "Yesterday, when we tweeted about a Hanukkah menorah and a Christmas tree being together in Beit HaHayal , some attacked us for "lack of consideration for Christian soldiers." Alas, that is not what this is. This amounts to the promotion of 'Hanuchristmas' and the placing of Judaism and Christianity on the same level. This is very serious and unprecedented. This has nothing to do with respect for any soldier. It's a sign of the intentional blurring of identities."