Alan Dershowitz: "If I were in Israel I'd be joining the protests against the government. Civil liberties and minority rights are in danger...."
... But it's a lot more complicated than that. This week we try to sort through the debate taking place about Israel's judicial system.
Last week, the newly appointed Minister of Justice, Yariv Levin, announced a plan to rebuild Israel’s judicial system. Depending where you stand on the issue, the news about the suggested reforms either delighted you or filled you with dread. It’s also quite possible that between all the headlines and politicking, you’re not sure about either stance.
One thing is certain: Israel’s judicial system is much more complex and nuanced than the press on either side is willing to acknowledge. In today’s column, our objective is to provide readers with some materials for learning more. Responsible participation in the conversation requires knowledge and exposure to both sides, a balance and nuance which are painfully missing from the discourse in today’s world.
The purpose of Israel from the Inside is to break out of the echo chamber, to listen to those with whom we disagree, and to walk away more thoughtful, even if not changed. Today, on this particularly crucial issue, we are providing sources for you to edify yourself with if you are interested.
TWO VIEWS WHO ARGUE THAT THE SKY IS NOT FALLING
The link below will take you to a clip of Professor Moshe Koppel, chairman of the Kohelet Policy Forum. Professor Koppel has co-drafted proposed constitutions for Israel and has drafted several laws that were passed in the Knesset. We spoke with Moshe on Israel from the Inside back in August 2021 about the Nation State law. You can listen to that interview here.
Yonatan Green is the Executive Director of the Israel Law & Liberty Forum.
His piece, “The judicial apocalypse is not upon us,” explains why the proposed reforms do not “warrant a collective panic attack.”
TWO VIEWS WHO ARGUE THE REFORMS ARE DANGEROUS
The Israel Democracy Institute Override Cause Explainer. Here Dr. Amir Fuchs
Senior Researcher at IDI declares that an override clause would turn Israel into “one of the weakest democracies in the world, constitutionally speaking…”
Professor Suzie Navot, Vice President of Research at the Israel Democracy Institute and Professor of Constitutional Law, further explains the override clause.
Professor Yaniv Roznai, Associate Professor and Vice-Dean at Reichman University's Harry Radzyner Law School discusses why he fears the proposed reforms spell destruction of Israel’s democracy.
REFORM OR RUIN?
Dr. Guy Lurie, attorney and research fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute take a middle-position and explains why some changes to the judicial system might be necessary, but warns that too much change would seriously harm the independence of the judicial branch.
Lastly, the link below will take you to a debate hosted by The Times of Israel on the subject. The speakers include David Horovitz, Founding Editor of The Times of Israel; Prof. Amichai Cohen, Senior Fellow at the IDI’s Center for Security and Democracy; Prof. Yaniv Roznai of Reichman University; Prof. Moshe Koppel, founder of the Kohelet Policy Forum; Dr. Tamar Hostovsky Brandes of the Ono Academic College Faculty of Law; Adv. Shlomit Ravitsky Tur-Paz, director of the IDI’s Religion and State Program and Adv. Noa Sattath, Executive Director of the Association for Civil Rights in Israel.
“There is a war [being] waged on Israel’s identity. Is it what it was founded to be?”
She’s a human rights activist and Former Member of Knesset of Telem and Blue and White (both centrist parties) and she’s not discouraged by Israel’s new government. Why is that, you may be asking? Listen to find out.
A preview of our interview with Michal Cotler-Wunsh will be posted on Wednesday for free subscribers to Israel from the Inside; the full conversation and transcript will be available for paid subscribers to Israel from the Inside.
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