The State of Israel has over the years engaged in the exchange of terrorists and criminals in exchange for the release of hostages. This topic has prior been explored in posts such as Q 10731 and Q 86771

In the context of the October 7th attack and the latest series of exchanges, have any new responsa been written and published on this topic? I am interested in seeing both those for and against.

  • I've not seen any responsa but I have seen videos from prominent halachic authorities if that works for you?
    – Dov
    Nov 29, 2023 at 22:59
  • @Dov Though my preference is for more comprehensive statements/treatments (if they exist) I would nevertheless accept answers that include on the record statements in any format from the respective authorities. Nov 29, 2023 at 23:04
  • For sure - it is pretty recent in the grand scheme of things
    – Dov
    Nov 29, 2023 at 23:05
  • Simon Jacobson commented on it here
    – shmosel
    Nov 30, 2023 at 14:04
  • @shmosel thank you Nov 30, 2023 at 15:00

2 Answers 2


Following on from our interaction in the comments.

HaRav Asher Weiss shlita has a recording where he discusses the issues at length here.

  • Thank you, I'll be giving it a listen :) Nov 29, 2023 at 23:11
  • 2
    No worries - he's phenomenal!
    – Dov
    Nov 29, 2023 at 23:12

R Shlomo Aviner discusses his position in this very recent podcast interview (starting at 33:28).

He is known to be against exchanging terrorists for hostages (see the paragraph starting "Prisoner swap deals in modern Israel" in this relevant article).

If the topic is of interest to you, note the forthcoming book on the laws of war from R Shlomo Brody who wrote extensively on the topic: Ethics of Our Fighters: A Jewish View on War and Morality.

  • +10 for Ethics of Our Fighters. True, very true. Nov 30, 2023 at 4:34
  • 1
    I'll be giving a listen to R. Aviner and checking out R. Brody's book, thank you for bringing it to my attention! Nov 30, 2023 at 14:55

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