It seemed like a good idea at the time - Comment - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
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    • Mark Lincoln
    • 12.11.10 | 23:05 (IST)

    In 1948 Israel's Haredi were overwhelmingly opposed to the creation of Israel. They refused to fight for the state, and were an immense burden in the desperate fight for Jerusalem. The solution to what was an annoying and cloying if colorful population was to buy it off. The Haredi were offered Orthodox control of religious matters a stipend for students and special status for national service. In return the overwhelmingly secular Jews fighting for Independence asked only that the Haredi stop interfering and cooperate to the extent of not making things worse. Who at the time, when Israel's existence was quite in doubt, that 60 years later the Haredi would be demanding control of every aspect of Israeli life and massive subsidies? It seemed like a good idea to buy off the Colorful Symbols of a Vanishing Past. Except they didn't vanish.

    from the article: The guilty party has been found: Ben-Gurion
    First published 02:44 12.11.10 | Last updated 02:44 12.11.10
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