But when I was persuing the news I came across a little piece that might suggest a new direction Chareidi extremists might turn. It seems that Iran has, in its attempts to reduces the feelings of sexual tension men might feel while travelling, instituted a little thing called "temporary marriage":
Shia Islam allows a man and woman to marry for a fixed period of time, ranging from an hour to a century.
A man can also have any number of temporary marriages - or sigheh, as they are known.
However, Iranian society still looks down on temporary marriage as a cover for prostitution.
Iran's interior minister, himself a cleric, said marriage was a human need and temporary marriage should not be used just for sex but to solve social problems.
He said there needed to be a cultural change to allow this.
He also said couples should marry at an earlier age.
Iran first started promoting temporary marriage as an alternative to living in sin 15 years ago.
The then President, Hashemi Rafsanjani, said it was a way for men and women to satisfy their sexual needs.
He even said there was no need for a cleric: the couple could read out an oath in private in order to marry.
These days, some girls who want to travel with their boyfriends and be allowed to stay in the same hotel room or avoid arrest by the moral police might have a temporary marriage.
Poor women who need financial support also do it.
Well they might, given that there's a gemara that discusses this very issue. In the sugyah the issue is raised for exactly the same reasons as mentioned in the article quoted above. A man during his travels might have certain urges. Let unfulfilled he might come to commit serious sexual sins, therefore he might be allowed to take on a temporary spouse, in a concubine state of marriage, to allow him a legal outlet for his tension. I recall discussing this with a Rav when I first read that gemara and his immediate response was "Yeah, we don't do that nowadays" but there it is, an actual Jewish practice that predates the rise of Islam.
So if we're going to out-Muslim the Muslims then the burka and restrictions on women in public are not enough. We need to live according to our mesorah and if the gemara says it's okay, then who are we to argue? A spin-off might even be an increase in Chareidi unemployment. After all, the excuse "Honey, I have to go on another business trip" sounds a lot more legitimate when you are actually involved in business...Now on the surface the idea that any Jews would see this as permissible is bizarre. After all, the extremists are doing their best to limit what men and women can do while legally married. Will they allow temporary marriages despite this?