Over the last few months, hundreds of thousands of Israelis have taken to the streets to make their voices heard about the proposed governmental reforms to the judiciary, the creation of a civilian national guard, and much more.
After 75 years of having a Jewish State, we find ourselves amidst an unprecedented and deeply divisive crisis. On the surface, this crisis is about Israel's future as a democratic Jewish state, dealing with issues such as separation of powers among the branches of government, how judges are appointed, the roles of religion and state, and the lack of an Israeli constitution.
We are relieved PM Netanyahu has finally responded to months of protests by nearly every sector of Israeli society that vigorously opposed the government’s judicial revolution. However, this temporary pause has come at an exorbitant price. To keep his fragile coalition intact, Netanyahu struck a deal with National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir to create a “national guard” that would fall under his authority. The formation of a civilian militia, which falls outside the scope of the Israeli police and under the stewardship of a far-right extremist leader like Ben-Gvir, is a threat to Israel’s democracy and civil security.