Draft-dodging to reach 60% by 2020, manpower chief says

Modi’in, Reut-Maccabim most motivated cities; Haredi exemptions mean Jerusalem and Bnai Brak are worst offenders.

November 18, 2010 18:15
1 minute read.
‘THE GREATEST threat to the ‘people’s army’ is when those people who are supposed to champion the Zi

Soldiers 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)


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Sixty percent of 18-year-olds will dodge the draft by 2020, Maj.-Gen. Avi Zamir, head of the army’s Manpower Division, warned on Thursday.

“The IDF still is a people’s army with fairly high motivation to serve, but there is a crack in society and we need to prevent that crack from growing,” Zamir told reporters during a briefing marking the IDF’s November draft.

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Zamir repeated statistics revealed earlier this month that 50 percent of Israeli men between the ages of 18 and 40 already don’t serve in the IDF, either in their mandatory service or in the reserves corps.

The main cause for the increase in draft-dodging numbers, Zamir said, was the increasing number of haredi men who received an exemption from military service due to their ultra-Orthodox beliefs.

In 2006, the number of haredi exemptions, at 45,000, was 9.6% of the draft. In 2010 it climbed to 62,500, or 13%. By 2020, that percentage is expected to increase to 20%.

The city with the highest motivation to serve in the IDF is Modi’in, along with its satellite community of Re’ut-Maccabim.

Tel Aviv took the 53rd spot in the number of men who enlist in the IDF out of the 67 cities that the Manpower Division ranked. With woman, Tel Aviv did better, and came in 27th place. Jerusalem and Bnei Brak were at the bottom of the list in both male and female categories.

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