There is a surprising new poll out in Israel, where there has been significant controversy in recent weeks about religious soldiers who leave ceremonies where women sing. The walkouts have generated angry opinion pieces in the media and fury among top army brass, with 19 reserve major generals petitioning the Defense Ministry claiming that they damage “the fundamental values of Israeli society” and the army eventually ruling that soldiers must stay in their seats. But it seems that Israeli society is more evenly split on the issue than most of us assumed.
A poll conducted by the Panels Research Institute found that 49% of the Jewish public believes that religious soldiers should be excused from military ceremonies that include women performers. Backing for the army’s position, that they must attend, was lower at 40%.