“…when a city becomes a Charedi city, the other residents, if they are smart and if they can, should run for their lives”
Some of this Charedi instinct to overplay a political hand has to do with a communal sense of isolation and even persecution. Some of it is also because the leaders of this community have too little regard for the sensitivities of other Israelis. In practice, it means that when a city becomes a Charedi city, the other residents, if they are smart and if they can, should run for their lives. The tragedy of Beit Shemesh is that many people just cannot leave. The value of their property would not take them very far in other centrally located cities in Israel. So they have to fight for a place, and as they do that they have to use all available means, including claims that have little substance. My five-cent advice for them is to focus on preserving a decent environment in non-Charedi areas and not to insist on keeping their forts in Charedi areas. Like in real battle formations, avoiding a long supply line is essential to victory.
Shmuel Rosner, “Non-Chareidis’ Forced Retreat”, Jewish Journal (5-11 September 2014), 46.