NATIONAL DEFENSE - YOUTH

How Nathan Blanc won the war

Natan Blank, 19, has been in prison for nearly two months for refusing to serve in the Israeli Defense Forces because he opposes the occupation. When he arrived at the induction center and declared his refusal to serve, an IDF disciplinary court immediately jailed him for ten days. Since then, he has repeatedly refused to be inducted and has had his imprisonment extended three times.

Most of the 400 prisoners in Prison No. 6 are soldiers who went AWOL or who had wanted a different assignment (for non-ideological reasons), or who simply “have no strength for the army.” A few are being held for drug violations or violent behavior. An IDF committee determined that conscientious objector Nathan Blank must be released from military detention after serving 140 days for refusing to join the army. The 20-year-old declined a psychiatric exemption, which was available to him; rather he insisted that he be allowed to do alternative non-military service. Protests in support of Blanc have also increased. Dozens of activists demonstrated in front of the government offices in Tel Aviv demanding his release.

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