IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi (r.) and Rabbi Chaim Druckman
IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi (r.) and Rabbi Chaim DruckmanIDF spokesman, Flash90

Leading rabbis of the Religious-Zionist movement have decided to postpone their planned meeting with the IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi, after learning that the question they planned to discuss has already been settled.

The issue in question is the response of the IDF to the Supreme Court's inquiry on the matter of inclusion of women in combat units. The IDF has reportedly made the decision to incorporate women into additional combat units, and when the rabbis learned of this, they decided to postpone their meeting with Kochavi, as it was no longer of any relevance given that his mind has already been made up.

Among the signatories to the letter penned last week to the Chief of Staff are Rabbi Chaim Druckman, Rabbi Zalman Melamed, Rabbi Yaakov Meidan, and Rabbi Eli Sedan.

On behalf of Rabbi Druckman, a spokesman noted that, "In light of the IDF's announcement that it will comply with the Supreme Court's demand to introduce additional female soldiers into infantry and other combat units, the rabbis of the Religious-Zionist movement announce that they are postponing the meeting to which the Chief of Staff had invited them.

"Furthermore, the rabbis will be convening to discuss future steps to take, now that the IDF has made such a decision despite our appeals and warnings."

Although it was Kochavi who arranged the meeting, this was done at the request of the rabbis, made several weeks ago, before the IDF issued its response to the Supreme Court. At that point, it still appeared possible to avoid creating a situation in the IDF that could see it effectively split into two combat groups, one mixed-gender and the other manned by religious soldiers who do not serve alongside women.

The Chief of Staff repeatedly rebuffed the rabbis' requests for a meeting until one was finally set for this week - too late to achieve anything.