Bearded IDF Soldier Still in Jail


Amitai, a chareidi soldier who refused to remove his beard, is in jail, serving a three-month sentence.

The episode led MK Yaakov Margi of Shas to remark: “Incidents like this send a clear message to the chareidi sector that the IDF wants to alter your external appearance and not allow you to keep a chareidi lifestyle even in the frameworks meant for chareidim.”

“My brother enlisted to the IDF with a beard, received an exemption from shaving, and served on his base with a beard for a long while,” the soldier’s brother told Channel 2. “Until one day Lt. Col. Roy Ashuri came and decided to cancel the leniencies chareidi soldiers enjoy. The rov of the base recommended the leniency for religious reasons. The rov told me that he knows my brother and davened Shacharis and Mincha with him every day at the base shul. But his commander told him the base rov is not the one who decides and that he did not accept his recommendation.”

The brother told Channel 2 that the commander decided that Amitai was not chareidi on the basis of a photo taken at a beach. But the photo was taken at a gender-separate beach, the brother insisted.

Amitai joined the air force in defiance of his chareidi family but is still punctilious in keeping mitzvos. Following his refusal to shave, he was confined to base for a week and then warned that he was about to be put on trial for disobeying an order. This prompted him to go absent without leave for three months. Since giving himself up, he has been jailed for three months prior to a trial where the Military Prosecution is to demand 240 days’ imprisonment.

“I investigated, I checked; he is a chareidi soldier,” said Channel 2 journalist Carmelah Menasheh.

{ Israel}


  1. Now you are jailing people who don’t shave beards, and you jail Israeli soldiers doing their duty defending Israeli’s from Islamic knife and stone throwers, and truck jammers. I love when a country fights so against itself that it is blinded by the outside. I heard the IDF is fearful of shooting anyone now they may go to jail for it. I love when a country defends the other and it is against itself. Dear Israeli government when do you think you will go from a banana republic to a sovereign nation????

  2. Rules and regulations in the IDF must reflect the mitzvoh observance of the Religious/Chareidi soldier. When a case like this comes to trial – the entire IDF brass will be in boiling water over discrimination towards religious soldier.

    Kol hakavod for a soldier serving the time rather then listening to an absurd order.

  3. John Kerry hit it on the head. You can’t have both. Either you have a State or you have your religion. Pick your choice.

  4. Apparently, the only “chareidi” soldiers are the ones subject in the holy Chofetz Chaim’s famous sefer regarding such.
    The “State of Israel” will die before it is a religious entity.
    Let’s please all understand this as we plow forward to finish what these socio-secularists started.


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