The Israeli Supreme Court decision last week declaring that yeshivah students may no longer be exempt from serving in the IDF predictably caused a major uproar in the chareidi world. It is interesting that suddenly the chareidim are correctly outspoken about the Israeli Supreme Court being inherently corrupt as it self-appoints its colleagues of the same political persuasion. The Supreme Court also asserts itself into areas that should be totally out of their purview, such as security decisions and religion. I don’t recall chareidim joining the fight against Judicial Reform last year.

The issue about drafting yeshivah students is understandably a highly charged one, with all sides deeply embedded in their positions. To address this in a column would be stepping into a minefield.

However, there is an important sidebar I would like to address. The chareidi world has monopolized the term Olam HaTorah – the Torah World – as though to imply that they lay sole claim to that term.

There is no doubt that the chareidi yeshivos produce some of the great talmidei chachamim (Torah scholars) of our time. Their roshei yeshivah are an inspiration to thousands as purveyors of Torah with incredible commitment to their cause. Less celebrated is the fact that the chesed – charitable institutions and volunteer organizations – emanating from the chareidi community are unsurpassed, from gemachs (free loans) to systems for caring for all health and sustenance needs. ZAKA is a classic, plus countless others. They are very entitled to be referred to as the Olam HaTorah.

Yet what needs to be emphasized is that the Olam HaTorah is not just limited to the chareidi world. The emunah (faith in Hashem) exhibited by those in the Dati Leumi crowd as soldiers in the battlefield and surviving family members of those killed, Rachamana litzlan, is beyond description. The m’siras nefesh – complete dedication – to Torah learning while literally under the gun in the battlefields of Gaza and elsewhere by so many of their soldiers is awe-inspiring. That is the Olam HaTorah as well.

My son Simcha recently went on a 48-hour trip to Israel for a friend’s child’s wedding. During his time there, he was able to arrange through Shai Graucher to visit wounded IDF soldiers in the hospital. One of the soldiers, a wounded chayal from a certain Hesder yeshivah, was learning in his hospital bedroom with the aid of a Hebrew ArtScroll Gemara B’rachos. The soldier explained, almost apologetically, that he chose to learn the relatively easy Maseches B’rachos with the Hebrew translation because he had not been able to learn properly since his war injury. He was nursing his way back to learning the more difficult masechtos by starting with B’rachos, using the translation and getting back into the way he used to learn. If he is not in the Olam HaTorah then I do not know who is.

If we have any hope for unity, at least in the Orthodox world, we must learn to respect and include those outside of our own way of practicing our wonderful Torah way of life.

This should not come as news. See the Haameik Davar, by Rav Naftali Tzvi Yehudah Berlin, written over a hundred years ago in Volozhin, who in his introduction to Sefer B’reishis, bemoans those who are critical of other Jews “who do not conform to their way of thinking.” That is the ultimate cause of “sin’as chinam – baseless hatred,” writes Rav Berlin, which plagues our community to this day.

Rabbi Yoel Schonfeld is the Rabbi Emeritus of the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills, President of the Coalition for Jewish Values, former President of the Vaad Harabonim of Queens, and the Rabbinic Consultant for the Queens Jewish Link.