Rabbi Amar Meets Peres, Hoping to Lower Flames over Enlistment (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Gil Ronen 07/15/12)
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The Chief Sephardic Rabbi, Rav Shlomo Moshe Amar, met President
Shimon Peres Sunday in the President´s Residence in Jerusalem, to
discuss the enlistment of hareidi Torah scholars and the public
debate over the issue.
The meeting was held at the Chief Rabbi´s behest. Rav Amar has
expressed his deep concern over the demands to force the enlistment
of large numbers of hareidi Torah scholars, going so far as to
attribute the occurence of an earthquake to the "persecution" of
"At this time, when spirits become inflamed, hatred may spread within
the nation," Rav Amar told Peres at the outset of the meeting, with
reporters present. "We are in days of discord. On the one hand our
soldiers, may G-d watch over them, feel that they are being treated
unfairly by risking their lives to defend the nation, and on the
other hand there are yeshiva students who ´sacrifice their lives in
the tent of Torah´ and continue to safeguard the existence of the
nation of Israel."
"I see a change taking shape in the hareidi public in the state of
Israel," Rav Amar said, noting military programs like Nahal Hareidi
and Shahar Kachol. "There are thousands who enlist and a process of
change is taking place, de facto. I believe that over time we will
see a true change within hareidi society."
"There are arguments within the nation, but the arguments must be
respectful," the rabbi added. "I came to ask you, Your Excellency the
President, that we issue a joint statement – the argument must be
carried out with love and friendship, as brother to brother."
President Peres answered: "I respect His Excellency the Rabbi, and
agree that everything possible must be done so that we reach
understanding and not deep discord."
"I turn to the people of Israel and join the call of the Chief Rabbi –
let us carry out this debate without extremism, in a supreme effort
to find a solution in which the burden shall be properly shared
within the nation for defending the homeland."
Peres noted that the original agreement between first Prime Minister
David Ben-Gurion and the hareidi leadership regarded "300 to 400"
yeshiva students, "but since then we have reached huge numbers – the
amount has become a problem." (IsraelNationalNews © 2012 07/15/12)
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