US Military Rabbi Ministers Across Afghanistan

A DoD article highlights US Army Chaplain (LtCol) Avi Weiss, a chaplain who “FOB hops” around Afghanistan as the only Jewish religious leader in the theater.

“Attempting to keep traditional Jewish laws is difficult in this environment,” said Weiss, explaining the shortage of rabbis in the military. “It’s a credit to the military that it does a lot to help someone practice their faith, but it’s still not necessarily the choice environment for someone who wants to live a certain way.”

While military atheists have complained that flaunting the presence of American Jews in Afghanistan may hurt the American mission, it actually does the opposite:  As Chaplain Weiss says, it is a credit to the US military that it works so hard to ensure the religious freedom of its troops.  That’s an example other nations can emulate — not something the US needs to hide.