A move to end the exemption from compulsory military service for ultra-Orthodox men who are religious students reveals a fault-line among Israeli Jews.
Ron emerges from the military enlistment office on a Jerusalem side street. He is an ultra-Orthodox Jewish teenager, who studies full-time in a yeshiva, or religious college.
He’s dressed in monochrome, and his face is as white as his shirt.
“I asked for an exemption from military service as a yeshiva student, but the army rejected that, and no-one is telling me why.”
Ron is baffled. Something is shifting in Israel. There is a groundswell of popular resentment against boys like Ron who, unlike most other 18-year-old Jewish citizens, have been exempt from military service.