Enemy army Draft-dodging on the rise
Source: ynetnews.com, 01-03-2009
By: Hanan Greenberg
The ‘Israeli' army chief of personnel said Sunday that the number of draft-dodgers has been steadily rising over the past two decades, mainly among those asking to be released from army service due to religious reasons.
Brigadier-General Avi Zamir's report was especially concerned with draft-dodging among women. In 1991 32.8% of able females did not enlist, the report said, while in 2008 the percentage recorded rose to 44%. Regarding men, the number increased from 18.2% in 1991, to 25.8% last year.
The occupation army claims many youths evade the draft using religious reasons. In 1991 21.3% of women did not enlist by citing a religious lifestyle, and in 2008 the number grew to 34.6%. In his report, Zamir said the army believes at least 8% are lying.
The ‘Israeli' army has been employing a number of methods in order to battle the phenomenon, including private investigators who track the girls' behavior on the weekend. More than 500 have recanted their religious declarations due to the army's investigations.
Religion is also cited by 10.9% of men who don't enlist, and the occupation army claims that if the trend continues, the number will reach 11.8% by 2012.
The army is also battling the phenomenon of early discharge. Ynet recently reported that due to a reform in the ‘Israeli' army's mental health services, the number of soldiers receiving early discharge under psychological pretexts has dropped considerably and just 13.8% terminated their service before its official end date in 2008, a decrease from 17% in earlier years.
Zamir also buried hopes for the shortening of regular army service, citing "the security situation and the reserves law, which decreased the reserve soldiers' combat activity."