Dozens of demonstrators gathered this morning (Thursday) outside the High Court of Justice in Jerusalem to protest the court’s decision to hear petitions next week against the Likud-Blue and White unity government deal.
The demonstrators, led by the pro-Israel watchdog Im Tirtzu, accused the High Court of abusing its power by unlawfully interfering in the Knesset’s affairs.
The protestors insisted that this was merely the latest development in a long history of undemocratic and biased political activism by the court.
Due to the current health crises, the organizers stated that the protest was coordinated with the police and adhered to the Health Ministry regulations.
The demonstration featured speeches from a number of academics, attorneys and journalists, including Hebrew University professors Dr. Limor Samimian-Darash and Dr. Gadi Taub, Ariel University professor Talia Einhorn, journalists Shimon Riklin and Yaara Zered, attorneys Simcha Rothman, Ziv Maor and Michael Dvorin, and publicist Erez Tadmor.
The demonstrators chanted slogans including “stop stealing our democracy” and “this isn’t Iran,” and called on the courts to stop their “judicial piracy.”
Acclaimed legal scholar and former United States federal judge, Richard Posner, was the first to coin the term “judicial pirate,” which he labelled former Israeli Supreme Court president Aharon Barak who was responsible for Israel’s “constitutional revolution” that gave more power to the courts.
Professor Talia Einhorn said that “the High Court has turned itself into a political party that seeks to impose its values on the country while acting in utter disregard of the law.”
Dr. Gadi Taub said: “We are no longer a democracy. We are a judicial dictatorship. There is no democracy in the world in which the Supreme Court enjoys so much power.”
Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg stated: “The High Court justices are acting as political actors who act in complete disregard of the wishes of the country’s elected officials.”
“The judges believe that laws, including Basic Laws, don’t need to be obeyed, rather are tools to be used to advance their political agenda,” continued Peleg.
“This blatant violation of the basic principles of democracy endangers the future of the State of Israel, and the time has come for the judges to end their judicial dictatorship and realize that this isn’t Iran.”