A soldier in the Israel Defense Force, who was born in the United States, has been sentenced to 11 days in jail for eating a non-kosher sandwich. The soldier is one of Israel’s lone soldiers, “those whose families live abroad and chose to leave their countries of origin to serve the State of Israel. These soldiers willingly accept the responsibility of defending Israel, their adopted home, in the name of Jews worldwide.”
According to a report that originated from an Israel Radio reporter, the soldier’s grandmother gave him sandwiches that were non-kosher and he offered them to his fellow soldiers.
The soldier said he was not aware of the army regulation that prohibits non-kosher food from being brought onto military installations or from being consumed by soldiers.
The IDF stated that the “soldier’s actions were not in keeping with the army’s expectations of cadets in its officer’s course and therefore he was punished.”
A representative from the unit has since stated that the Battalion commander has decided to reduce the soldier’s sentence from jail time to taking away his leave.
The United States military has never gone as far as regulating the food consumption of its members. If anything its regulations are more relaxed than U.S. laws, considering a military member can purchase alcohol and tobacco 24 hours a day at a class six.