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What is the Torah law on civilian when there is war?


What is the Torah law on civilians when there is war?

asked November 20, 2012

2 Answers


i am sorry to say that the Torah law on warfare is rather barbaric when compared to modern standards, although it may have been progressive for its times. It forbids raping captive women but doesn’t consider it rape if the soldier legally marries her. It allows the subjugation of a foreign people in order to collect taxes and wiping them out if they refuse.


It depends on who the war is against.When the Jews were attacked by Amalek after leaving Egypt God decreed that in the future Jews should wipe them out.Other nations like Moab near present day Jordan God said that the Jews shouldn’t antagonize them. By the way in regard to the current Israeli government policies,it is in violation of the Torah for a number of reasons: 1. The Talmud says that before the Jews went to war they needed the premission of the Sanhedrin which was the Jewish Religious High Court of 71 Judges;this court was only in power until about 100 years after the destruction of the 2nd Holy Temple. So without this court we don’t have the right to engage in military aggression against other nations including the Palestinians. 2. The Israeli government anyhow is secular and doesn’t have much respect for Torah law or Orthodox Jews. So when they make wars against Muslims it doesn’t come from religious motivation rather from political secular zionist motivations.
Rabbi A.T. Haredi Ultra Orthodox Rabbinic Student

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