Rabbi Levanon: IDF Soldiers Will Sooner Choose Death Than Hear Women’s Singing


rabbi-elyakim-levanonIsrael Defense Forces soldiers should choose death before they remain at army events which include women’s singing, a top settler religious leader said in an interview today.

The comment made by Elyakim Levanon, the rabbi of the West Bank settlement of Elon Moreh, came after earlier this week, 19 reserve major generals sent a letter to Defense Minister Ehud Barak and IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, imploring them not to allow harm to come to women’s service in the army as a result of religious soldiers’ demands.

The reserve officers indicated that their appeal comes in response to a series of recent events, including the boycotting of military ceremonies by religious cadets due to women singing.

The petitioners warned in their letter about harm caused to the motivation of women to serve in the army, as well as to what they termed damage to “the fundamental values of Israeli society.”

However, in a radio interview on Thursday, Rabbi Levanon criticized a possible ruling that would forbid religious soldiers from leaving events over women’s singing, saying that IDF soldier should choose death before complying with such an order.

“[The IDF] is bringing close the day in which rabbis will have to say to soldiers ‘you have to leave those events even if there’s a firing squad outside, and you’ll be shot to death,” Levanin said.

The Elon Moreh rabbi said he hoped that there will be “some wise people who will thwart this horrible move, and if not we’ll have no other choice,” adding that he would “recommend anyone who asked me against joining the army.”

Women’s singing has been but one example of rising tensions between IDF top brass and religious leaders, after last month, following orders from IDF rabbis, female soldiers were asked to leave the central event and had to celebrate in a separate area during the traditional dancing that marks the end of Simchas Torah.

{Haaretz/Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. imagine the outcry if one of the goyisher medines forced frum soldiers to do something aganst their religion. nebech, what our(?) “yiddishe medine” has fallen to……

  2. no one should dictate his views on life to others we are free to choose or are we in a totalitarian dictatorship what has religion come to dictatorship?

  3. re jomadar at #2
    indeed you are free to choose. you can eat chazer, you can be mechalel shabbos, you can watch television, etc.
    what you can’t do is tell a Rov what yiddishkeit should be. Of course, you can start your own version of yiddishkeit, which is historically common: conservative, reform, reconstructionist, catholic, and now maybe “jomadarism?”.
    Of course, if you happen to be a recognized Rov, then your opinion would have to be considered in conjunction with that of other Rabbonim, each opinion weighted by the relative level of the Rov [admittedly difficult]. In that case, I apologize.

  4. #8, You obviously are not very learned in matters of Halacha, and have no clue about the severity of “Abizrayu D’Arayois.

    Torah is not “Common sense”.Hashem did not have to reveal Himself on Har Sinai to teach His people “Common Sense 101”. Torah is the Sense of G-d- to all Maaminim.

  5. To #4:

    The IDF has just ordained Jomadar. Now will you apologize?

    Or will you maybe come to grips with reality? Ordination will never legitimize that which our Torah prohibits.

  6. There is an agenda to break down the religious and the deJudeazation of the Israeli military. If worded differently from the outset, there wouldn’t have been this tumult and misunderstanding
    Hashem bless these young wonderful young Yiddishe soldiers. Kudos to the rabbanim speaking up.