Information Clearing House By Matt Agorist Posted Tues. Eve., July 12, 2016
Outgoing chief rabbi, Brig. Gen. Rafi Peretz, of the Israeili Defense Forces, who is stepping down after six years in the position is being replaced. And, his successor, Rabbi Col. Eyal Karim’s appointment is being met with backlash — as he is outspoken for allowing soldiers to rape women during wartime.
Karim, who was announced on Monday as the intended new IDF chief rabbi, has provoked controversy with previous misogynistic statements, such as opposing female conscription and implying that rape was permissible in times of war.
According to Ynet News, Karim has been serving as the head of the Rabbinate Department in the Military Rabbinate. He is an alumnus of the Bnei Akiva Nachalim and the Ateret Cohanim yeshivas, and he served previously as a combat paratrooper, eventually commanding their elite reconnaissance unit, before taking a break from the military and eventually returning to its rabbinate.
In 2012, Karim’s controversy started when the Hebrew religious website KIPA, asked him, in the light of certain biblical passages, if IDF soldiers were permitted to commit rape during wartime despite the general understanding that such an act is widely considered repugnant.
His answer enraged many Israelis.
“Although intercourse with a female gentile is very grave, it was permitted during wartime (under the conditions it stipulated) out of consideration for the soldiers’ difficulties,” he wrote. “And since our concern is the success of the collective in the war, the Torah permitted [soldiers] to satisfy the evil urge under the conditions it stipulated for the sake of the collective’s success.”
In other words, soldiers can rape innocent women during times of war in order to keep their morale up.
Meretz party leader Zehava Galon said that Karim is not “suitable to be the rabbinic authority of the army, in which tens of thousands of women serve, and is not suitable to represent Jewish morality in any form.” She also condemned “his frightening, racist, and inflammatory statement” regarding wartime rape.
Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid urged Karim to disavow his remarks about women’s enlistment, saying, according to the Times of Israel, that without a public statement to that effect “he cannot be the military chief rabbi.”
“Regarding the reports that he said that beautiful gentile women can be raped during wartime, it appears this is not his opinion,” Lapid continued. “But if he thinks this, not only may he not be the chief military rabbi, he can’t even be a rabbi.”