The current law exempting yeshivah students from military service will automatically be revoked on Feb. 1, the High Court ruled Tuesday. However, that doesn’t mean the army will begin drafting yeshivah students at that time, a source familiar with the subject told Hamodia.
“Theoretically, the court’s ruling means that the previous law expires and the draft applies to everyone. Does that mean the army will start drafting yeshivah students? No.
“If we’re in the middle of an election campaign in February, which looks likely as of now, the army will tell the court that it wants to wait until there is a Knesset. If we aren’t in elections, and the government is on track to continue until the rotation, then everything will be fine. We’ve drafted a law that is ready to go, but Blue and White isn’t voting for it due to the uncertainty over elections.”
Benny Gantz, who heads the Blue and White party, has agreed to vote for the new law, but is refusing to do so as long as there is a chance of elections, the source explained. “Blue and White tells itself, why should we vote for a law exempting yeshivah students, which is controversial among the secular public, and then pay for it in the general elections? But if Gantz knows that the government will continue, and he’ll be taking over as prime minister, he’ll vote for it, and then we’re okay.”
The immediate danger, the source, a veteran of Israeli politics, added, is that the chareidi parties will have to enter into an election campaign with the draft issue unresolved.
“It would be very bad for us if this becomes a campaign issue,” he continued. “As it is, the chareidi parties aren’t in good shape – partly because of corona, partly because of politics involving Bibi.
“The best thing for us is that there not be elections now. Then Gantz will do what he agreed to do, and we can put the matter of the yeshivah draft behind us, once and for all.”