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Overcoming semantic confusion and provincialism in Israel



Flawed policies come from a flawed election system of proportional representation and endless coalition government. Israel turns out to be a democratically elected despotism. In fact its policies cast doubt on whether Israel is a Jewish State or not. A Prime Minister who changes this system can become truly great. But it means ditching Israel's democratic reputation. The Likud Party make it worse when, dependent on Arab votes, they let insurrection slide.

As this writer indicated, not this week, but years ago, the word “democracy” does not appear in Israel’s Declaration of Independence, officially known as the “Proclamation of the State.”  Nor does the word appear in the American Declaration of Independence, as this author emphasized in his book On the Silence of the [American] Declaration of Independence (University of Massachusetts Press, 1976).

Democracy and Judaism don’t mix

The Knesset: 61 years of parliamentary democracy. But in fact Israel is not a true democracy and the Knesset badly needs reform.

The Knesset, observing 61 years of existence. Photo: Itzik Edri, CC BY 2.5 Generic License

Moreover, as demonstrated in articles of mine written in direct opposition to former president of Israel’s Supreme Court judge Aharon Barak –  there are inherent contradictions between democracy and Judaism. The most obvious is this: If the Muslim citizens of Israel, who now number about 20 percent of the population, were to become the majority, the democratic principle of “one adult/one vote” would result in the end of democracy in Israel!

Nevertheless Martin Sherman, a fine political analyst, belatedly declared in his Jerusalem Post article of October 15. 2015, that “the word ‘democracy/democratic’ does not appear once in [Israel’s 1948]  Declaration of independence”; and he adds, apologetically: “This should not be construed as indicating that there is any inherent clash between Israel being Jewish and being democratic. Indeed, quite the opposite is true …”

Sherman’s apologetic remark is indefensible.  As I have often demonstrated, there are several inherent contradictions between Judaism and democracy. This was laughably illustrated when Arab members of the Knesset once prevented the passage of a “who is a Jew” law!

Israel not a true democracy

Lunacy aside, and as I have meticulously demonstrated, Israel is not even an authentic democracy – a fact that politically correct political scientists in Israel studiously ignore!  This will be evident to any candid citizen. One need peruse almost any chapter of my 70-page treatise, The Myth of Israeli Democracy: Toward a Truly Jewish Israel (2007), which is now online.

The book’s iconoclastic conclusion can also be gleaned from almost any chapter of my earlier book Jewish Statesmanship Lest Israel Fall (2000). This larger work, endorsed by eminent American and Israeli scholars, was published in Israel by the Ariel Center for Policy Research. It was also published by the University Press of America (2002), and has been translated into Hebrew and Russian. Hence there is no point in my enlarging on a further critique of those incapable of seeing the obvious and inherent contradictions between democracy and Judaism.

However, not to discourage people infatuated by democracy, allow me to add that in some of my books, viz., An American Political Scientist in Israel (Lexington Books 2010), and The Theological Foundations of American Exceptionalism (Israel-America Renaissance Institute, 2012), I show how to redeem Israel’s so-called democracy by shifting power from oligarchic parties and from an oligarchic Supreme Court to the people.

This can be done by (1) direct personal election of the Members of the Knesset; (2) making MKs individually accountable to the voters in constituency elections; (3) replacing the exclusivist and virtually hidden method of appointing the judges of the Supreme Court – it’s now called a “courtocracy”; and (4) having select members of the Legislature, i.e. the Knesset, participate in the nomination of judge, as the like is done in various democracies, and by having the judicial principles of the nominees open to question in an open Knesset forum, as is done in the United States.☼

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