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Israeli Army Apologizes for Book Saying Non-Jews Aren’t Equal to Jews

The Israel Defense Forces has apologized for publishing a book of religious regulations that states non-Jews do not have equal rights in Israel.

The IDF issued the apology on Thursday in a letter to MK Zahava Gal-On (Meretz), and said it had halted distribution of the book, which claims that “the concept that non-Jews and Jews have equal rights in the state goes against the opinion of the Torah.”

The book was published by the IDF rabbinate and authorized by the IDF chief rabbi, Brig. Gen. Rafi Peretz. It deals with questions of keeping Jewish law (halakha) in the army and discusses regulations for affixing mezuzahs on IDF bases.

One discussion has to do with whether mezuzahs are even needed at army bases, given the fact that both Jews and non-Jews serve in the IDF. There have been numerous halakhic rulings over the generations that mezuzahs are not required in dwellings where both Jews and non-Jews live.

As part of the discussion, the book looks at the question of who owns state property – and whether non-Jewish citizens have as much claim to it as Jews.

Read more at Haaretz.com.

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