Israeli military faces Druze uproar over Jewish nation bill

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Israel’s military chief is pleading to keep politics out of the army amid protests by the Druze minority against a recent bill to enshrine the state’s Jewish character.

Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot has called on “all commanders and soldiers to keep controversial political issues” out of the military.


In a statement Wednesday, he reaffirmed “our shared mission and camaraderie” with the Druze, an Arabic-speaking minority that serves in the military.

Like other minorities, the Druze have been outraged by the bill, which they say renders them second-class citizens. Two Druze officers recently said they would stop serving in response to the bill.

The Druze, who follow an offshoot of Shiite Islam, have been fiercely loyal to the state and have risen to high office in the military and politics.

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