While meeting with the parents of draft-dodgers who were arrested by the IDF, a senior Haredi rabbi praised the anti-draft protests and even compared the demand to join the military to the Holocaust.

Rabbi Shmuel Auerbach with his followers

Rabbi Shmuel Auerbach with his followers Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

Over the past few weeks, the young followers of the extremist Jerusalem faction group led by Rabbi Shmuel Auerbach have been holding disruptive protests against what they are calling the “recruitment sentence.” The Israel Police considered questioning Auerbach but claimed that there was no evidence indicating that he encouraged his young followers to hold the protests.

However, Auerbach met with the parents of the IDF draft-dodgers who were arrested on Wednesday evening. During the meeting, he held their hands, commended their sons’ actions and praised the protests.

In the recording of the meeting, which was obtained by Channel 2 News, Auerbach is heard saying that those who participate in the protests are “representing all of Israel, from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and the rest of the generations.” Auerbach then likens the demand to appear at the IDF recruitment facility to the Holocaust, saying that “throughout all of the time in the diaspora, there were difficult attempts and times and troubles that, God forbid, [I] don’t want to remember.”

“What has happened has already been enough,” he continued. “There was a Holocaust…He [God] will stop our troubles but we need to remain strong [until then].”