Disorder in the Court

How Israel’s supreme court has effected its own constitutional revolution—and thereby undermined public confidence in the rule of law.

Israel’s supreme-court building in Jerusalem covered with snow. Wikimedia/Moshe Milner.

Israel’s supreme-court building in Jerusalem covered with snow. Wikimedia/Moshe Milner.

Essay
Dec. 5 2016
About the author

Evelyn Gordon is a commentator and former legal-affairs reporter who immigrated to Israel in 1987. In addition to Mosaic, she has published in the Jerusalem Post, Azure, Commentary, and elsewhere. She blogs at Evelyn Gordon.


In 2015, following lengthy negotiations, President Barack Obama concluded an executive agreement marking the accomplishment of a cherished policy goal: the nuclear deal with Iran known as the JCPOA. Also in 2015, after similarly lengthy negotiations, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu concluded an agreement realizing a long-cherished policy goal of his own: a deal enabling development of Israel’s largest natural-gas field by a private American company and its Israeli partner. Both agreements included a commitment by the respective governments to refrain from adverse legislative action over the next ten to fifteen years: in Obama’s case, action to reinstate nuclear sanctions against Iran; in Netanyahu’s case, action to alter the regulatory regime for natural gas to the disadvantage of the private energy companies.

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More about: Israel & Zionism, Israel's Basic Law, Israeli politics, Israeli Supreme Court, Law