Jerusalme - Shortage Of Beard-Fitting Gas Masks Leaves Orthodox Jewish Israelis Scrambling For Protection
Jerusalem - With the possibility of a Syrian attack on Israel looming in the shadows of a seemingly pre-destined U.S. military strike, a shortage of beard-fitting gas masks and protective hoods has left Orthodox Jewish men scrambling for protection, while community leaders step up the pressure on the Israeli government to quickly address the shortage.
THE WASHINGTON POST (http://wapo.st/19ZHyiP) reports that the demand for gas masks and hoods has skyrocketed since U.S. intelligence confirmed last week that Syrian civilians were killed by chemical weapons.
Sources say Orthodox Jewish men, who have reported to distribution centers to obtain their masks, have been told by government officials that a shortage of protective masks has resulted in the remaining supply being held aside for the elderly and those with respiratory issues.
In 2012, the Israeli government announced all citizens would be provided with protective masks in the event of a chemical attack.
Orthodox Shas party leaders are pressuring Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to quickly order a mass production of the Bardas, a hooded protective device that covers the entire head, and which was made available to bearded Israelis during the Gulf War.
Meir Green, an Orthodox Jew who was unable to obtain a Bardas, said, “If, heaven forbid, the masks are needed, there won’t be time to shave, even if a razor were available.”
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