Israel's Supreme Court Is Unusual, but Not That Unusual

The Jewish state is unique both in the strength of its democracy and in the self-assurance of the judges who challenge its democracy. It may be fated to remain so.

A swearing-in ceremony for newly appointed judges at the Israeli president’s residence in Jerusalem on December 8, 2016. Yossi Zamir/Flash90.

A swearing-in ceremony for newly appointed judges at the Israeli president’s residence in Jerusalem on December 8, 2016. Yossi Zamir/Flash90.

Response
Dec. 19 2016
About the author

Jeremy Rabkin is a professor of law at the Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University.


Evelyn Gordon begins her essay, “Disorder in the Court,” by juxtaposing a contentious agreement between America and Iran with a contentious agreement between Israel and three private companies; the latter agreement involved Israel’s offshore natural-gas deposits. The comparison is meant to illustrate the unique ambitions of Israel’s supreme court. Informed American readers, however, will not find it all that surprising that courts can delay major development projects. Environmental litigation has that effect all the time in the United States.

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More about: Israel & Zionism, Law, Politics & Current Affairs