By Elisheva Rosman-Stollman
In many smooth armies the non secular soldier is suspect. Civilians and officials alike ponder whether any such soldier may perhaps signify a possible 5th column. This obstacle is principally trendy within the public discourse over the presence of non secular Orthodox Jews serving within the Israel safeguard Forces. Will they obey their commanding officer or their rabbi? With study accrued over virtually a decade, together with 1000s of hours of interviews, Elisheva Rosman examines this query of loyalties and divulges how spiritual infantrymen negotiate a spot for themselves in an establishment whose ambitions and norms occasionally clash with these of Orthodox Judaism.
For God and Country? makes a speciality of the pre-service learn courses on hand to non secular conscripts. Many reporters and students in Israel are suspicious of the student-soldiers who perform those courses, yet in reality, as Rosman's examine demonstrates, the pre-service examine courses function mediating buildings among the calls for of non secular Zionism and the calls for of the Israel safety Forces and don't inspire their scholars to disobey orders. This used to be specifically obvious in the course of the disengagement from Gaza in 2005. Many in Israeli society envisioned student-soldiers may defy their orders, consistent with the guideline in their non secular leaders, yet this didn't occur as anticipated. In excessive profile circumstances resembling this and in issues encountered day-by-day through spiritual soldiers—the blending of the sexes, for instance—Rosman has chanced on that the pre-service examine courses can effectively function brokers of civil society, either capable of minimize the military's efforts to meddle in civilian affairs and vice versa.