Dafna Meir
Dafna Meir Courtesy of the family

Journalist Yifat Erlich related this morning in Yediot Aharonot that, several weeks ago “A” from the Israeli Air Force had called her, inviting her to present a lecture to religious female soldiers about Dafna Meir and the best-selling book Ehrlich had written about her life.

The date was set, the fee agreed upon, and it appeared that the lecture was ready to proceed.

Yesterday, “A” suddenly announced that she was forced to cancel the lecture. “I am updating that, after many requests to approve Yifat for a lecture, we have still not received approval, and the event is to take place soon. So, unfortunately, we are forced to cancel the lecture. Thank you for reserving the time for us! We hope that we will successfully schedule it for another time.”

According to Ehrlich, the IDF had said that “the Military Rabbinate has a problem with Yifat.”

“A problem with Yifat? That’s strange. I was among the only religious journalists who expressed support for the Military Rabbinate. I gave them a respectable platform in various articles on the pages of this newspaper, and I went out of my way to defend them in various opinion columns.

“But it appears that I, an Orthodox woman whose father is a rabbi, am not pure enough to speak before the holy IDF girls,” she wrote this morning.

“A” claimed that the problem stemmed from content in the book which is opposed to the position of the Military Rabbinate.

The army spokesperson said in response that “The planning and coordinating of the educational event [at which Erlich was to speak] was not done in an orderly fashion, according to accepted IDF protocol. The contents of the educational event was not assessed by the relevant authorities, such that they were never either approved or rejected. The issue of the planning and coordinating of the event will be investigated.”

Dafna Meir, a 39 year old nurse at Soroka Hospital in Beer Sheva, was murdered a year-and-a-half ago when a terrorist breaking into her home in Otniel in Judea stabbed her to death in front of her children. Her struggle against him caused him to flee, preventing him from entering the house and thereby saved her children's lives.

A year after her death, Erlich, who never met Meir, published a book about Meir’s life called “What if I Die Tomorrow Morning?”

Describing the experience of writing the book, Ehrlich had told Army Radio, "It was a very intensive year with Dafna. "There is something remarkable about this woman. I did not know her, but I found myself missing her during this past year. She just hasn't left me."

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