You mean a democratic regime?

What characterizes a democratic regime is a series of characteristics which until now seemed self-evident and are very well defined in all civic instruction manuals:
-The holding of periodic elections open to all citizens;
-The constitution of a Government according to the result of these elections, constituting the Executive Power, on the basis of a majority party or a coalition of parties which have agreed on a government program within Parliament ;
-The acceptance by the minority which has become the “opposition” of the rules of the democratic game by expressing in Parliament their oppositions or their suggestions, particularly in the commissions where projects and proposals for laws are developed, and within the framework of demonstrations of streets on the basis of respect for public freedoms, therefore within a well-defined legal framework, and consequently, not hindering the free movement of people, and without calling into question national unity and the common interests of the Nation and of the State;
-Respect for the “separation of powers” between the Executive Power, the Legislative Power and what is commonly called the “Judicial Power” that is to say the judicial apparatus of the country whose independence with regard to other institutions is guaranteed.
-Nowadays, another characteristic has become essential: a free written and electronic press held to moral and professional rectitude while respecting the obligation to question people representative of the different points of view present, with equality of speaking time, moderation in tone, the distinction between the description of different points of view, and the personal position of the journalist, observer or specialist, without ever losing sight of a concern for objectivity. This in no way prevents the press or broadcasting body from having a defined and clearly announced “editorial line” which nevertheless remains subject to intellectual honesty.
However, in the State of Israel of 2023, absolutely all of these elements are violated one by one, in the worst way, by the opposition, the press and the media, several Magistrates of the Supreme Court, some units of the National Army, and numerous institutions that have become the “strongholds” of a certain ideology that the last elections of November 2022 proved to be in the minority.

We must first recall that there exists in Israel an undemocratic anomaly following what the President of the Supreme Court, some thirty years ago, Judge Aharon Barak, himself called the « constitutional revolution « . Indeed, by relying in a questionable manner on two laws supposed to defend individual freedoms, the principle of which has always been unanimous among the people of Israel, and by simple jurisprudential decision, therefore without intervention of the elected representatives of the Sovereign People, the Court has given itself an authority superior to that of Parliament and that of the Government, by giving itself the right to annul an ordinary law, a decree, an ordinance, a circular, in short, any disposition among the hierarchy of norms, seriously violating the principle of separation of powers.

Nothing is comparable, anywhere, to the situation created in Israel where any ghost association – including one financed by enemy countries – without having to prove any special interest in acting, can launch an appeal against a vote of  the sovereign parliament of the Jewish State, and often win his case, for the benefit of an ideology that is questionable from the point of view of the interest of the State and the Nation!

This trend has gradually increased over the years, also giving the Legal Advisor to the Government, and the legal advisors to Ministers, disproportionate power, without any democratic basis, to the point of increasingly hindering the normal functioning of democratic. institutions. By all kinds of subterfuges, never based on a law, the Supreme Court ruling like BAGATZ, has become the absolute power in the country, often calling into question the authority of the Government and that of Parliament when, in a normal democracy, the definition of “Public Good” must be a majority of votes,

Many eminent jurists very quickly advocated a return to the previous doctrine of the Supreme Court which consisted of respect for the democratic separation of powers, through the Court’s abstention from claiming to rule the political domain which is that of the elected representatives of the Nation. But it was not until November 2022 that a minimum draft of legislation was developed for this return to normal.

This is the pretext for an unprecedented outburst in Israel, of slander, manipulation, lies, disguising the reality of the project as an « antechamber of the dictatorship », justifying months of monster demonstrations financed in a suspicious manner, notably from foreign countries, press campaigns, colossal equipment, very expensive logistics, all of this producing an effect of loss of control, with systematic obstructions of the country’s main arteries of circulation, violence, including the looting of private houses in order to block the roads, an increasingly pathological autosuggestion that has become inaccessible to reasoning and dialogue. Worse, some are ready to jeopardize national security by advocating the disarmament of sensitive army units and the refusal to serve in the country’s defense. Others attempt to sabotage the national economy by working to lower Israel’s ranking in international banking credit or launch calls for foreign intervention, or wish to sabotage health services. Nothing excludes the possibility that certain appeals abroad may not have been successful given the means implemented.

What is most striking in the current situation in Israel is the incredible unconsciousness of the « opponents of judicial reform » who, supposedly to « defend democracy », find it totally justified to trample on all the elementary principles of any democratic regime, in good conscience.

The opposition does not formally contest the result of the elections, but asserts in every tone with unspeakable audacity that the majority resulting from the regular elections would not be legitimate. This lie repeated a thousand times like an incantation has in no way become the truth, even if a few thousand people have convinced themselves of it.

Most of the media engage in permanent attacks, without any brakes or limits, against this majority, systematically violating the elementary rules of intellectual honesty, relentlessly giving microphones and cameras to opposition leaders or to ordinary people whose the speech is tirelessly the same, moreover without arguments, mainly mentioning fears, sensations, gratuitous hatred, and unfounded accusations. But on the other hand, neither the Ministers in office, nor the Prime Minister himself, manage to transmit their thoughts and their positions to the People of Israel, because the rare interventions that manage to get through are shortened, faked, truncated and immediately the object of tendentious “interpretations”, through which journalists who have become activists,

After months of attempts by the Government to obtain, a larger national unity agreement after possible adjustments to the bill intended to restore the situation prior to Judge Barak’s « Constitutional Revolution », notably within the framework of the Knesset committees, or even, depending on a totally derogatory procedure, under the auspices of the President of the State, mobilized for the circumstance beyond his legal competences, the Minister of Justice, main author of the project, encountered a systematic, irrational and unhealthy blockage , of the entire opposition.

Faced with this reality, the Knesset went to the vote and adopted with a majority of 64 votes out of 120 members, a first set of measures limiting the ability of the Court to interfere in some decisions of the sovereign Parliament, by modifying a basic law, by application of its constituent right recognized by the Doctrine and the jurisprudence of the Supreme Court itself.

Immediately, the opposition, in violation of the law, filed an appeal before the Supreme Court to annul this law. The Court should have immediately recognized its incompetence to deal with this question positively or negatively, since it has no constituent jurisdiction.

However, this was not the case and the Court gave a first temporary approval to the request for annulment while convening an unprecedented plenary assembly of the 15 Magistrates of the Supreme Court in a particularly short time, placing the country facing an extremely serious political and constitutional crisis.

The Speaker of the Knesset has just declared that « we should not expect the Knesset to allow itself to be ousted without reacting. »

When one further considers that former great political, administrative and military figures of the State have publicly taken up the cause of subversion, against the respect due to the will of the People clearly expressed by a democratic vote, it is clear therefore to note that this question has highlighted a gap in society, beyond the manipulations, exaggerations, misunderstandings and lies that many politicians have tried and are still trying to exploit.

It is clear that the main caesura is that which relates to the place of Jewish Tradition in the sovereign Jewish State. There are those who want him an exclusive place, those who want him an important place, those who want him a modest place and those who want him no place at all and see themselves as one of the jewels of Western civilization. It is especially this last category that is caught in the maelstrom of irrational refusal, gripped by panic fear that suddenly bearded extremists could impose on them a way of life that they do not want. The huge parades of women in red, convinced that the return to judicial standards would transform them into “sex slaves” show the ignorance, fear and manipulation of which this population is a victim. The real question is how was it possible to occur, during the 75 years of renewed independence of the Jewish State, such contradiction with the authentic content of the Jewish hope, which is a Freedom Theology.

The reality is that there is a broad consensus among our people to love and defend the State of Israel as the sovereign State of the Jewish People returning from exile, in an atmosphere of political, religious, thought and action freedom. It is about granting each trend, each nuance within the framework of this consensus, the conditions for its flourishing. We must therefore urgently reestablish mutual respect and, to begin with, respect for the legal rule, for positive law which must be binding on everyone, including the magistrates of the Supreme Court. We are entitled to hope that a majority of the latter will be able to see the immense danger where the perpetuation of a feeling of superiority, which is expressed in particular by the famous expression of Judge Barak of « enlightened public » risks putting the Whole nation.

Leon Rozenbaum

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