A 3-state solution for the Haredi draft

Ovadia Yosef recently threatened that ultra-Orthodox yeshiva students may have to emigrate from Israel in order to avoid military service. Actually, this process may be in full force now if one considers areas past the 1967 Green Line as being outside of Israel.

A pragmatic Ben-Gurion-like solution which calcified into a status-quo reality of a few to tens of thousands of Haredim exempted from the Israeli Defence Forces draft, might make another status-quo natural progression to a new autonomous political geography next to Israel and Palestine.

Haredim currently have the fastest population growth rate in settlements past the Green Line, so they are emigrating from internationally recognized Israel and into an area that requires heavy military presence to keep them safe there.

Perhaps just issuing past-the-Green-Line Haredim weapons and pulling out regular and reserve IDF troops and the Border Patrol and declaring them a “Home Guard” may offer a solution. Allowing non-Zionist Haredi to keep all their subsidies and entitlements may be far cheaper than maintaining the IDF security apparatus that currently keeps the Haredi neighborhoods past the Green Line secure.

As most Haredi aren’t Zionists, Haredim might even vote in a local government which might negotiate a canton status with the Palestinian Authority and might receive their Home Guard training from the PA and coordinate their activities with the PA, as the IDF sometimes does.

This might be better than a two-state solution, it might be called a” two-states-plus-canton” as as way to overcome Haredi theological resistance to the creation of a pre-Messianic Jewish state. It might be a self-governed, self-policed and self-defended post-modern ghetto with quasi-state status, not unlike the current Palestinian Authorities on the West Bank and Gaza whose Israel-defined pre-state status might serve as a template for a Hareidi canton of the future.

About the Author
Pini Herman, PhD, is a principal of Phillips and Herman Demographic Research based in Los Angeles; He specializes in demographics, big data and predictive analysis; He has been affiliated with the University of Southern California Dept.of Geography, the USC School of Social Work, and served seven years as Research Director at the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles.