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The Purse and the Sword

Daniel Friedmann

Published in print September 2016 | ISBN: 9780190278502
Published online August 2016 | e-ISBN: 9780190278533 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190278502.001.0001
The Purse and the Sword

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The Purse and the Sword presents a critical analysis of the Israeli legal system in the context of Israeli politics, history, and the forces that shape Israeli society. The book examines the extensive powers that Israel’s Supreme Court has arrogated to itself since the 1980s and traces the history of the transformation of the Israeli legal system and the shifts in the balance of power between the branches of government. Centrally, this shift has put unprecedented power in the hands of both the Court and Israel’s attorney general and state prosecution at the expense of Israel’s cabinet, constituting its executive branch and the Knesset, its parliament. The expansion of judicial power followed the weakening of the political leadership in the wake of the Yom Kippur War of 1973, and the election results in the following years. These developments are detailed in the context of major issues faced by the modern-day Israel, including the war against terror, the conflict with the Palestinians, the Arab minority, settlements in the West Bank, state and religion, immigration, military service, censorship and freedom of expression, appointments to the government and to public office, and government policies. The aggrandizement of power by the legal system led to a backlash against the Supreme Court in the early part of the current century and to the partial rebalancing of power toward the political branches.

Keywords: Israeli legal system; judicial activism; history of Israel; Yom Kippur War; Israeli political system; law and politics; state and religion; citizenship and nationality; Jewish identity; Israeli Supreme Court; separation of powers

Book.  416 pages. 

Subjects: Comparative Law ; History of Law

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Table of Contents

A State Is Born in The Purse and the Sword

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Menachem Begin in The Purse and the Sword

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