IDF Opens Probe Into Financial Corruption Tied to Haredi Draft

As of the end of last year, about 5,000 ultra-Orthodox officers, conscript soldiers and career soldiers were serving in the IDF, the army says.

Gili Cohen
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The chief of staff, then Gabi Ashkenazi, visiting a classroom where soldiers - including Haredi recruits - are learning software programming.Credit: IDF Spokesman
Gili Cohen

The Military Police have launched an investigation against a number of Israel Defense Forces officers on suspicion of involvement in financial offenses involving the drafting of ultra-Orthodox men.

The IDF confirmed on Monday that an investigation was underway.

Among the officers summoned for questioning over the past few days is a senior officer in the IDF department that handles the ultra-Orthodox draft.

The IDF declined to provide details of the suspicions against the officers or about the investigation itself.

However, sources in the army said there is no connection between this investigation and one conducted in the past on suspicion that officers in the IDF rabbinate had illegitimately been awarded posts of municipal rabbi and thus increased their salaries. The Military Advocate General decided to close that investigation without issuing indictments, although disciplinary steps were taken against those involved, including the head of information security in the IDF and a rabbi in charge of integrating ultra-Orthodox soldiers into the IDF.

According to IDF figures, as of the end of last year, about 5,000 ultra-Orthodox officers, conscript soldiers and career soldiers were serving in the IDF. The army offers dozens of different jobs in special programs for ultra-Orthodox soldiers. Among the slots open are software checkers, welders, multimedia editors and staffing the call center in the Jewish Awareness branch.

The special program for the ultra-Orthodox is intended for men between the ages of 21 and 28 and to married men.

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