Rabbi Chaim Druckman, head of the Bnei Akiva yeshivas and a leading religious Zionist figure, on Thursday harshly criticized the impending decision to close the IDF Rabbinate's Jewish Consciousness Department.
"Harming the Jewish Consciousness Department is the same as seriously harming the IDF and the fighting spirit of IDF soldiers," said the rabbi.
"It is forbidden under any circumstances to close the Jewish Consciousness Department of the military rabbinate, and they shouldn't dare to harm it at all, because any harm against the department is a critical blow to the IDF in its entirety."
Rabbi Druckman continued, saying, "it's important to emphasize that the department does not cater to religious soldiers, but rather to all IDF soldiers and certainly this is not a religious subject, but instead an important issue for the preservation of the fighting spirit of the IDF, and the preservation of the motivation of the soldiers."
"There is no replacement for the Jewish Consciousness Department of the military rabbinate, because only there do they learn things from the sources, the Tanakh (Torah, Prophets and Writings – ed.), and the tradition of Israel throughout the generations."
"If there are other bodies that want to contribute to the Jewish consciousness, that is wonderful, but certainly it is completely forbidden to harm that which already exists," emphasized the rabbi.