Dozens of haredim staged a protest this morning outside the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court where three haredi men who were arrested yesterday for their alleged roles in harassing haredi IDF soldiers were being arraigned.
Above: An excerpt from one of the pamphlets allegedly produced by the three men. It depicts a pig dressed as an haredi soldier enticing haredi children and snatching their souls.
Haredim Protest, Arrests Made, As Haredi Men Who Incited Against Haredi IDF Soldiers Arraigned
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Dozens of haredim staged a protest this morning outside the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court where three haredi men who were arrested yesterday for their alleged roles in harassing haredi IDF soldiers were being arraigned, Ynet reported.
Initial reports yesterday on the arrests reported that only two haredim were arrested.
The three – who are at this point only facing charges of violation of privacy laws and insulting a public official – were arrested because they are believed to be key haredi activists behind the 3-year-long campaign to demonize haredi IDF soldiers and incite violence against them.
As part of that campaign, the three men allegedly published the names, photos, IDF duties, haredi religious affiliations, and personal and family contact information of haredi soldiers and recruiters.
The pamphlets and pashkvils (wall posters) the three men allegedly produced also depicted haredi soldiers as pigs who hate Torah scholars and who are out to snatch the souls of pure innocent Jewish children.
As an alleged result of those materials, haredi IDF soldiers and recruiters received waves of threatening emails, letters and phone calls, and some were physically attacked.
Law enforcement officials involved in the investigation told Ynet police have the names of four suspects and evidence linking them to the incitement campaign. Some, but not all, of those four men have been arrested, and more arrests are still possible.
This morning, the court extended the remand of two of the three suspects by five days while outside, haredi protesters held signs that called for an "end to the persecution of religion" and that demanded the three haredi men be released.
Several protesters were detained by police in the scrum.
Haredi rabbis vehemently oppose haredim serving in the IDF or civilian national service because doing so would "weaken" the Torah study haredi rabbis profess protects the Land of Israel and its Jews from annihilation. However, when Hamas rockets were landing in southern Israel, almost every haredi yeshiva evacuated to the center and north of the country for safety reasons. Zionist Orthodox yeshivas, whose students serve in the IDF, did not evacuate and did not close.