In addition to the fact that there is no practical reason for women to serve in battle, their participation in non-physical aspects of the military is of questionable worth.
(Just as one example: The male-female dynamics that often accompany mixed offices are always a problem in regular work-settings, but can lead to disaster within a military setting, with so much security and lives at stake.)
It has been pointed out many times that the only other country to enforce the female draft is North Korea.
Israel's mandatory draft of girls is a big chilul Hashem. Furthermore, girls who do teshuvah sometime between high school and IDF service aren't always considered religious and therefore aren't always exempt from this ridiculous draft of teenage girls — much to the distress of these girls.
Even fully charedi Beit Yaakov girls who aren't yet registered for seminary following high school graduation have been caught in the draft.
But let's get back to arayot.
Army-Training for WHAT?!
So I won't say everything, but I will say this:
When I was already frum and living in Eretz Yisrael, I got to know a young woman who was just starting out in Torah & mitzvot. She'd been living in Israeli society for a while and was more familiar with regular Israeli society.
I was chewing over the idea of giyus banot with her, saying that while I agreed that women are not effective in battle, I honestly did not understand why girls couldn't serve in non-combat areas of the IDF. (I no longer think like this.)
To my surprise (after all, she wasn't so frum at that point), she wrinkled her nose and curled her upper lip at the idea.
"The army is really a bad influence on girls," she said with distaste. "Girls really shouldn't be there."
I was surprised at the chill in her attitude toward the idea. Secular (or even some modernish religious people) are not generally so opposed to female enlistment.
"Why?" I asked. "What's wrong with non-combat positions for girls?"
She looked like she was deliberating what to say. "Well," she finally said. "I'll give you just one example that happened with 2 friends of mine."
Her 2 girl friends went through the standard (approximately 2 years) of IDF service. Upon being discharged, these same 2 girls decided to go and become pritzot in a elite beis znus in Japan that caters to wealthy clientele.
I was shocked.
"And you think that their army service had something to do with that?" I said.
Still looking like she had a bad smell in her nose, she said, "Yeah."
But she didn't want to go into anymore detail about what had happened with these 2 girls during their army service.
Now, I know that 2 don't prove a rule and that most girls do not completely lose their dignity in that way in the army. But the fact that there is something in the IDF that can lead to this is a problem.
In this situation, my friend was convinced that the girls' decision to enter into such a deplorable lifestyle was a direct result of their IDF service. Meaning, they'd shown no inclination toward that before.
And certainly, you don't hear that happening as a result of entering into other institutions.
Some Very Real (& Very Tragic) Results of Female Enlistment in the IDF
While she was there, she noticed that the waiting room was full of very young women - like on either side of 20.
My friend's heart went out to them. She was also really shocked. How is it that so many girls who are so young are having miscarriages, and then needing a D&C? "I couldn't believe all these young girls were having miscarriages!" she said to me. "I just felt like, 'Oh, these poor girls!' "
When she confided her concerns to her husband (who'd served in the IDF), he said, "What are you thinking? How can you be so naive? These girls are here for abortions. They're chayalot and the army pays for their abortions."
In 2014, 1000 chayalot underwent abortions.
In 2015, it was 839 (730 of which were "taken care of" by the IDF).
This is obviously appalling on so many levels, it's hard to know where to begin.
The physical & emotional trauma & aftereffects of abortion have been extensively documented (and repressed by pro-abortion groups). That these young women are being put through this is such an unconcerned manner is appalling.
Not to mention the circumstances that led up to this, especially since the methods to avoid pregnancy are so acceptable in Israeli society (and free to any IDF soldier) and there is still the idea to marry if a couple discovers a pregnancy.
Another reason for this situation is the atmosphere in the army. It's sort of like an American college dorm in its hefkerut between males & females, some areas worse than others.
This doesn't even begin to touch on the very real issues of harassment & coercion & seduction & grooming that not only occur, but are greatly exacerbated by the enforced obedience endemic to any army.
And finally, yet most importantly, all of the above (whether by consent or coercion) are halachically forbidden — not that the powers-that-be care.
Countering the Propaganda
There's so much propaganda & social pressure regarding female enlistment, it's very hard for a teenage girl to resist the bombardment.
The propaganda is also done in such a skilled and alluring way.
I've even seen "charedi" media feature photos of chayalot who've completed their completely meaningless and gross tank service.
Charedi girls going off the derech even express interest in enlisting.
It's promoted in such a way that's hard to resist.
Furthermore, not all girls lose their tsniut in the army, but the individual cases don't justify the general problem.
And it CERTAINLY does not counter the very reason WHY the IDF insists on a mandatory draft for teenage girls.
(And no, it's not because girls are better at passive observation of monitors. That claim is part of the propaganda machine.)
Here's what Rav Avigdor Miller said about giyus banot, quoting a book by an army general he doesn't name (but can probably be double-checked by seeing which Israeli generals wrote books in the 70s):
Now we want to save העם היושב בציון, we want to help them out. We want to stop the wars; and therefore if we’re going to fight against the adverse influences there; if we’re going to exert pressure on the government that they have to remedy these evils, maybe we can have a hand in protecting the Jews in Eretz Yisroel...We want them to stop drafting girls in the army.
Because girls in the army means only one thing. Like that Israeli general who wrote a book about the Israeli army. We can trust what he tells us. And he states openly that for most girls, the induction into the army is their first experience in znus.
For most Israeli girls the army is a beis zonos. So now you have an institution, the Israeli army, which is one big house of prostitution and the girls are forced into it. Now that’s not my statement. It’s a statement by a general who wrote a history of the Israel Defense Forces and he makes that statement openly. He doesn’t make it in a clandestine secret way that you have to read between the lines.
He says it openly. They’re not ashamed.
TAPE # 204 (February 1978)
How to Protect the Jews of Eretz Yisroel
The Aspect of Israeli Mentality You Need to Know in Order to Understand the Issues
Then please scroll down to Story #3: Armored Corps Avoidance Anxiety Disorder (ACAAD)
And also this related new post:
The Politically Incorrect Truth: Females Need Protection to Avoid Harm; And in Situations of Harm, Many Find It Hard to Act in the Absence of 3 Crucial Factors (Alternative Title: Yet More Reasons Why the Mandatory Draft of Girls is a Very Bad Idea)